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Removing masks in classrooms

Carroll County requests local control from state
Posted at 3:51 PM, Jun 02, 2021

WESTMINSTER, Md. — The teachers have had a chance to get vaccinated, as have students 12 and over, so some school board members and members of the state delegation want Carroll County to be able to decide for itself when to drop masks in the schools.

“The evidence seems to be pretty clear, based on all the data we’ve had for the last 15 months, that kids, particularly kids that are younger than teenagers---there’s almost no risk of a serious case for a child,” explained Sen. Justin Ready, (R) Carroll County.

The hope is that the letter to the State Board of Education would allow each school district to make its own determination about lifting the restriction based on its own numbers.

“Our community spread in Carroll County is now very small. The spread in schools has been small throughout, but now it’s miniscule,” said Ready, “and so for us, at some point, this is becoming more theatrical than science or fact-based.”

While some critics suggest unvaccinated children ineligible for shots could be put at risk, supporters of local control say even when they can get it, many may decide not to, and they frown on discriminating between the two.

“I have heard that maybe by fall they can, but a lot of people don’t want to give their six, seven, eight-year-old this vaccine, because, again, the chances of contracting this and having a serious case, much less a fatal case, is so tiny as to almost be zero, statistically,” said Ready. “so I don’t want to set up a scenario where we’re saying, ‘Well, you have to wear your mask until you get your vaccine.’”

Ready says he’s not expecting an immediate response from the State Department of Education, but the sooner, the better with so many students returning for summer school.