Making Masks a Choice
Making Masks a Choice
Dear fellow BCPS students,
Let me make a quick disclaimer. This petition has nothing to do with politics or anyone’s stance in the political spectrum. This is simply just to make the students voices heard. Also if parents would like to sign it as well they are welcome to do so. Your parents deserve a say too.
I have asked a few students, from multiple schools in the Bedford County Public School district, for their opinions on the new mask situation. I, quite honestly, got mixed emotions on this subject. While some said they were a little disappointed but if they had to they would wear them, most students said they were told they would have a choice in wearing a mask if they opted to vaccinate and then they got vaccinated and felt their choice was taken away or that they don’t like wearing them because they are difficult to breathe in and they are uncomfortable. One student said, “They don’t help at all and there has only been 300 people in our age group who have died with Covid.” One student, however, really brought all of the students ideas together and said “I believe it should be optional and left up to the student and their families. Even students who are vaccinated are still required to wear masks, which doesn’t incentivize people to get vaccinated, if that’s their goal. Granted, I’m not vaccinated, however; for those who opted to vaccinate, it’s unfair to them because they’re still required to wear a mask…..” The student then brought up a concern for students with asthma saying, “…wearing a mask all day, for 8 hours, is extremely uncomfortable….” They then continued with, “…I also believe the masks, for people who don’t want to wear one, will be a distraction and will annoy students and make it harder to pay attention in class. Additionally, as someone who has worn glasses with a mask, it’s extremely frustrating.” They then continued saying, “I don’t feel like masks will benefit our learning.” The student then concluded with, “Also, with us operating at full capacity this year, we will probably not have the option to remove our mask when seated at our desk like we were last year when we were socially distanced.”
I completely understand that the Governor of Virginia is really trying to crack down on these restrictions, I really do, but I want to plead with the school board. We’ve been doing this for over a year and a half and many of us are tired of it. These restrictions are not benefiting our learning. It is extremely difficult to focus with a mask on your face (unless you enjoy wearing them). Us students want to get back to normal. Please help us students in trying to get our choice back! We need the School Board staff and the staff of schools on our side. Another point I would like to make is our current transportation situation. It has come to my attention that we are running low on bus drivers. I believe we are too focused on forcing students to wear masks that we aren’t focused enough of how our students are getting to school.
In conclusion I hope you stand with me in trying to get the student body choice back! After all what is the point in having a learning environment if students don’t feel like they have a say in how they learn.