Schools across the Cape Fear reevaluate mask policies due to recent spike in COVID-19 cases

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) —School systems across the Cape Fear region, are meeting and making changes in their COVID-19 protocols over the past few days.

On Wendnesday, another school system made a decision on masking and temporarily changing in-person learning.  The Brunswick County Board of Education voting unanimously to cancel classes for the remainder of the week, and reinstate its mask mandate. Brunswick County Schools is making the changes due to rising COVID-19 case numbers, and staffing shortages.

Board members say by temporarily halting in-person learning, they hope to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

“I know it’s going to be hard on the parents, here we are throwing them a curveball ‘hey you’ve got to have some childcare tomorrow, you know, because it’s Wednesday morning and tomorrow your kids not going to be in school. But to separate them and keep them at home, since we can’t see it and we don’t know where it’s at, it’s going to be effective to get them apart,” said  Robin Moffit, board vice-chair.

The omicron variant forcing many school districts to take a look at their mask policies. One local parent says he understands why many school districts are making changes.

“I have children that don’t go to Brunswick County, but they do go to local public schools and you know it’s frustrating. It’s frustrating for my 6-year-old, but I understand kind of both sides. It think ultimately it should be parent’s choice,” said Brandon Hayes, parent.

Masks are still optional in Pender County Schools, but Columbus, Brunswick, New Hanover, and Bladen County Schools all have reinstated their masks policies this week and last week.

Some residents believe masks need to be worn by people of all ages,  as we try to fight the highly contagious variant.

“I wouldn’t say they don’t care, or they do care, but it’s for their own good, and that’s what the people don’t realize. It should be up to the professionals in the medical field,” said Jeremy Bidwick, resident.

“Kids ought to be in school, they should not miss out on their education. They’re falling back, falling back, it’s not good for the kids, and to me they should wear their masks. All of the adults in the school wear their masks, children wear your masks and learn and get your education,” said H. Brewer, resident.

Thursday and Friday will become teacher workdays for Brunswick County Schools, and Monday is a holiday. The district’s mask mandate will go into effect on Tuesday, when students return to school.



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