TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — After weeks of standing firm on his decision to have Leon County School children return to class with optional masks, Superintendent Rocky Hanna is now changing his tune with a new ask of Governor Ron Desantis.
"We would like to implement a temporary mask requirement in grades Pre-K through 8," said Hanna.
It's a plea parents like Keyambreia Sapp support.
"I feel so much better about sending my kids back to school," Sapp said. "I was on edge, and I was definitely on edge after the last meeting because, you know, it just seemed like he didn't care."
Other parents and even some school leaders disagree.
Tallahassee Classical School posted a statement to social media saying in part quote,
"In straying from the governor's science-based position of allowing parents to decide whether or not their students wear masks, Hanna has chosen to ignore science and strain the mental health of Leon County Students."
Teachers are split nearly 50-50 in their support. Responding to a Leon Classroom Teacher's Association survey, 485 voted to keep masks optional, and 479 were in favor of a mandate. President Scott Mazur said, "There are only four things that we can do to keep students in the classroom. Those four things are cleaning services, social distancing, they are wearing a mask, and the last one washing hands. So if we do all of the things that we can, we can keep students in the classroom."
If the mandate is approved, students would be required to wear masks inside LCS buildings through August 31.