Mask Mandates


Emily Ramos

As coronavirus becomes a part of our daily lives, there have been many more states lifting mask mandates indoors. Many believe that if you are vaccinated, not wearing masks should be fine. Since the Omicron virus has been receding it has been discussed whether or not the mask mandate should be lifted in California.

What does this mean?

There is no way of knowing who is vaccinated in public and who is not, ultimately making it more dangerous for those unsure people to go without wearing a mask. Some people might think that it is not good to lift the mask mandate because in doing so there might be another coronavirus surge. Even though authorities assure that as long as you are vaccinated there is a low risk of you getting sick, it is still very possible and more so if no one is wearing masks.

Some people might not mind having the mask mandate lifted. Some people would like to go back to being able to see everyone’s faces and not have that embarrassing moment when you walk into the store and realize that you forgot your mask once everyone is staring at you. People may argue that not wearing masks will help go back to normal life. If everyone has had coronavirus at some point, it will stop spreading as much and eventually it might even become as normal as the flu.

Mask requirements

Everyone had to wear masks in public places and inside of stores, schools, work, etc. People are free to not wear masks if they are outside or doing some kind of sport. People with certain health conditions could also be exempt from wearing masks.

  • Masks must be worn over the nose and mouth while inside (no exceptions). Masks are available at all school sites for all students and staff.
  • Students should stay home if they are experiencing symptoms, such as fever, cough, sore throat, etc. Students, if you have to stay home – keep up with your class assignments and communicate with your teachers and staff.
  • If a student or staff member tests positive or must stay home due to close contact or symptoms, contact the school. Students should report their situation to the Guidance Office and staff should report to their principal or assistant principal.

Now people have the option to wear masks indoors. If people do experience COVID symptoms, though they should still go home and take a COVID test for precautionary measures.  Here in Montclair, most people seem to want keep their masks on by choice. Many students wear their masks but take them off when they feel more comfortable or are around people that they know. After asking people around campus if they were going to wear masks, 33 out of 44 said that they were going to continue wearing it.

“As someone who was supportive of wearing masks, I am comfortable with them ending. My only concern is for students who aren’t comfortable,” says English teacher Mr.Warner after being asked about his opinion on the mask mandates being lifted. “I am hesitant because I have grown accustomed to them and COVID is not fully gone yet,” says history teacher Ms.Pineda. After asking multiple teachers about their thoughts, most of them seemed hesitant because of their students. Some students will feel anxious about not wearing masks and fear that their peers won’t share the same values, while others do not care.

“I think it’s too soon and we should wait because it’s unfair that teachers don’t get a decision to require it in their classroom,” says sophomore, Joseph. He also talks about how this decision should have been taken into more consideration beforehand as it might not make teachers feel safe, but there is nothing that they could do about it. On the other hand, Senior Anthony Provincio says that he doesn’t mind because “COVID rates are going down and most people don’t wear them properly anyways.”

Other students are worried about being more likely to get sick because of people not wearing masks. Some students get sick easier than others so it is important for everyone to make sure that they are taking care of themselves and staying healthy. Most students have grown accustomed to it and feel safer when they have their masks on. It is important to respect everyone’s decisions and make sure to do what you think is best and not because you see the majority of people doing something or not doing something.