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BARRINGTON, Ill. (CBS) — It is a debate happening at almost every school district in the state and around the country – what to do when it comes to masking this fall.

On Wednesday night, there was no shortage of fireworks in Barrington when the issue came up. The meeting had been going on for more than four hours as of 10 p.

m., and more than 60 people had signed up.

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As CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar reported, the board even stopped the meeting at one point because of people’s behavior.

Constant interruptions and outbursts forced Barrington 220 School District board to take a recess just minutes into the meeting Wednesday night, which focused on the divisive issue of masks for COVID-19.

Some of the biggest reaction from the crowd came in response to smallest in attendance. Children chanted, “We don’t want to wear these masks,” and had the words, “Please don’t make me wear a mask,” printed on their T-shirts.

“You are simply making decisions based on your own fears,” one girl told the board.

The district is recommending masks for unvaccinated students in grades 6 through 12 grade – but they aren’t required. Kids younger than 12 who aren’t yet eligible for the vaccine will continue wearing masks.

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“I am extremely frustrated and I feel it’s disrespectful,” said Dr. Kadijah Ray.

Ray is a local physician and has a child in second grade. She along several others at the meeting want the board to follow the American Academy of Pediatrics’ most recent guidelines for schools. Those guidelines recommend everyone older than 2 years old to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status

“I didn’t think that I needed to be out here to have a debate when it’s so clear – the experts have spoken,” Ray said. “I would like the school board to continue universal masking.”

But Heather Dusek, who spoke at the meeting Wednesday night with her children, said the decision on masks should not be up to the board.

“I would like the choice, yes,” she said.

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We are told that no action was expected Wednesday night on what to do about masks for schools in Barrington, but the board will discuss all the public comments.

News Source: cbslocal.com

Tags: chicago news investigative barrington coronavirus covid 19 masks masks in schools chicago news investigative i would like school district at the meeting in barrington the meeting for schools wear a mask

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Gov. Abbott denies requests from mayor and judge to enforce masks in schools, government buildings

The mayor of San Antonio and a county judge sent a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott asking for permission to enforce mask wearing in schools and government buildings after the Republican governor shot down talks of mask mandates in the state. 

"The time for government mask mandates is over—now is the time for personal responsibility," Abbott tweeted Tuesday. "In May, I signed an executive order prohibiting mask mandates by gov't entities. Every Texan has the right to choose whether they will wear a mask or have their children wear masks."

The following day, San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg said a mask mandate could help save the lives of children before they head back to school. He and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff also sent a letter Wednesday to Abbott requesting the ability to enforce masks. 

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"As you know, students younger than 12 are not yet eligible for vaccination so it’s on all of us to protect those young people in our community," Nirenberg said Wednesday during a press briefing.

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"Schools should be able to do that," Wolff said of a mask mandate. He also added that "[Unvaccinated people] are putting themselves in great jeopardy, they’re putting everybody else in great jeopardy."

Nirenberg’s office did not immediately respond to Fox News’s request for comment on the matter. 

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Abbott’s office told Fox News that the governor’s official statement on mask requirements is his Tuesday tweet shooting down talks of mandates. 

Metro Health sent a text notification this week to Bexar County residents advising them to wear masks indoors regardless of vaccination status, which falls in line with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s updated guidance this week. 

The CDC had said in May that fully vaccinated people were not required to wear masks indoors, but updated its mask guidance Tuesday for vaccinated people over the threat of the delta variant of the virus. It now urges people in some areas of the country with "high" or "substantial" COVID-19 transmission to mask up indoors. 

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The updates come as the Biden administration continues urging Americans to get vaccinated, with White House press secretary Jen Psaki saying this week that vaccines "work."

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