Make Wilson County Schools Mandate Face Masks for 7-12 Graders

This petition made change with 2,191 supporters!

     We, the Teens of Mt Juliet, are concerned with the health mandates that are being put in place in our schools. We recognize the provisions that have been made, and we think that face masks should be required for 7th through 12th graders and faculty members who work with those students. We recognize that some of these students and faculty members are medically unable to wear masks, and would like to require doctors notes for those who will not be wearing masks. This is because of the large amount of coronavirus cases in adolescents that carry mild symptoms. Often, these cases do not carry fevers that will show up with temperature checks, yet can still be passed on to adults and others that will display severe symptoms. 

     While the argument could be made that concerned students should just stay home, “zoom learning” has shown us all that in-person interaction is more important to our well being than ever before. Students need these safe interactions to sustain our mental health and growth, and honestly to boost morale. This is a difficult time to live in, and the more “normal” things we can have, the better our overall mental health. We also have already been shown that this county’s “Online Learning” is a poor excuse for an education. The majority of students were not given adequate material last semester, and many of us ended up wasting the semester. We can not afford to fall any further behind. There are also very few risks to actually wearing a mask; the amount of oxygen available inside of a mask is the same as it is on the outside. The benefits of wearing masks largely outweigh the costs. Many students have high risk family members or are high risk themselves. It is simply unfair to ask them to sacrifice their high school experience when there is a simple, easy solution. A mask is a temporary inconvenience, but being in a high risk group is not something that these students and family members can change. If someone doesn’t want to wear a mask, they can simply choose the online learning option. 

     The CDC recommends that people over the age of two who do not have severe breathing problems and are able to remove the mask without assistance wear them. With our current plans, many people would not be following those guidelines. We believe that students in 7th grade and up are mature enough and able-bodied enough to wear masks. 

     Unfortunately, mask-wearing has been politicized. This has become a major reason for many people not wearing masks. We are not petitioning for any political reason, but simply for the safety of students and families. Mask wearing in school benefits not only the people inside the school, but also the whole county. If Covid-19 runs rampant in schools, we risk the health of everyone in the county. Our schools have a lot of students, and these students have family members who work in the county. If students catch Covid-19 in school, it will spread like wildfire in the county. We will be forced to lock down our county, or risk the deaths of hundreds of people. If we have to close schools, we will have to close already struggling businesses. This will have many adverse effects on our economy. If we are not cautious in schools, we will have lost all progress already made towards slowing this virus. We simply want to go to school, and remain safe while we do it.

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