For Damsker, this is all about the right to choose: mask or no mask.
“When you order someone to do something or to limit their freedom, it needs to be stopped as soon as that mitigation or control measure is no longer necessary,” he said Damsker. “It doesn’t matter if it’s the last two weeks of school.”
Still, some parents are wondering, why now?
Two petitions were passed around over the past month, one for lifting the mask mandate, and one against.
One Facebook group called “Re-open Bucks County,” publicly released the list of people who opposed making masks optional for students, titling the post: “Remember Their Names.”
One parent on that list declined to be named in this article for fear of further targeting.
“It feels like a hit list. It’s like an intimidation tactic,” said the Council Rock parent. “And that’s why I don’t really want to say my name. But that’s also them winning.”
The parent remains concerned about lifting mask mandates because her child has an underlying heart condition.
“We are not at herd immunity yet so it still makes no sense. Again with five days left, what is the point of this? It’s so stupid to me,” the parent said. “And dangerous.”
Another Council Rock parent, Kate Jarema, has come to the opposite conclusion about masking, based on her kids’ mental health.
She said her 7th grader and sophomore have suffered this year. Their grades have dropped and their social lives have been depleted.
“Mentally they’re just drained. They can’t stand it. In school, it’s so ridiculous,” said Jarema. “They’re not allowed to talk to one another because of these social distancing rules.”
On Friday, the first day of the change, she noticed a difference.
“My kids were elated this morning. Like actually happy to get on a bus and go to school because they didn’t have to wear a mask,” said Jarema.