Please defy governor's order and require masks - for our kids

Please defy governor's order and require masks - for our kids

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Karuppiah Chockalingam started this petition to CSISD Superintendent College Station ISD administration

Dear Administration and Board of College Station ISD,

As concerned parents of College Station kids, we write to ask that you please defy the governor's mask mandate ban and require masks in College Station schools. We are in the midst of a pandemic like no other and now more than ever we need leaders who can see beyond politics and know what is best for our kids. The Delta variant of the coronavirus is spreading like wildfire and right now in College Station our kids who are ineligible for vaccination have been given no option but to attend crowded schools in person, without the mask wearing protections recommended by the CDC. A recent New York times report highlighted that 11-15% kids who contract COVID, even with mild systems, will experience "long COVID", a highly detrimental long-term chronic condition that can afflict everything from muscles to heart and brain function (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/08/health/long-covid-kids.html?smid=em-share). The ONLY practical and proven line of defense for these most vulnerable members of our society is mask wearing, not just by oneself, but universally. It is true that personal choice for decisions that do not negatively impact others is an important civil liberty upon which this great nation was founded. As a parent I cherish having the autonomy to make decisions that shape my kids' future. But let's be clear - preventing the spread of a deadly disease is NOT a personal choice - it is a civic duty.

Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston schools, amongst schools from many other Texas districts, have stood up for their kids' safety and required kids to wear masks even though their decision directly contradicts their governor. Clearly, the decision of large swaths of Texas schooling districts to "bite the hand that feeds them" is motivated not by a political or monetary agenda. These are districts that have glimpsed something dire and have made an extremely difficult decision in the face of a force that is much larger than any one person.

We are not sure why right now the larger schooling districts in Texas seem to be more concerned about their children's health than smaller districts like CSISD. Perhaps the seriousness of the problem is more apparent when the population density is higher, giving rise to an amplified rate of infection and a dire shortage of hospital beds. It may well be the case that the smaller population density in College Station has thus far dampened the local spread of the virus, relatively speaking. Regardless, the writing has long been on the wall and you know what will happen if the simple measure of mask wearing is not enforced - you know that our kids will be unnecessarily exposed to the virus, you know that kids will get sick, you know that classes will be disrupted, you know that our kids' education will ultimately suffer.

Please be bold and defy the governor's ban on mask mandates, We understand that this decision is not one that is taken lightly and comes with the very real risk of political backlash. But we implore you to please do this. For our kids.

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