When I first heard that the Pennfield School Board was going to ask the community to vote whether to mandate masks at their schools I thought at least they are asking.  Then I realized that the School Board never informed my flagship station, WBCK located in Battle Creek, newsroom about the vote and I saw no reporting about this vote until after the vote had been taken.

I then realized the first I heard of the vote was from a report published on the website of WWMT News channel 3 on Thursday, January 20th.  The vote occurred on Tuesday, January 18th and ended on Wednesday the 19th.

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Why didn’t the Pennfield School Board inform the media before the vote so more people in the “School Community” would be aware of this upcoming survey/vote?

A caller to my radio show on Friday told me he received a text informing him to expect an email about this vote.  He does not have an email account so he called the school and was told that the only way to vote was if you had an email account.

On Sunday I spoke with Brad Crandall, a Pennfield school board member and asked him the following questions his answers follow those questions:

Q: Who could vote?

A: Parents, teachers and staff.

Q: How did they inform people about the vote?

A: Texts, email and phone calls

Q: Do you have to have an email account to vote?

A: Yes, the district sent out an online survey

Q: Why didn’t they inform the media prior to the vote so they could inform people to expect this vote?

A: Does not know why.

Q: What were the options given in that vote?

A: Here is a picture of the survey/poll sent to parents and staff of Pennfield School District:

Credit: Pennfield School Board
Credit: Pennfield School Board

Q: What was the total number of people who could vote and what was the percentage that did vote?

A: There are approximately 4,250 parents, teachers and other staff.

With only 1,041 people voting on the Board's motion of mandating mask-wearing during school hours passed with approximately 25% of the vote.  As I tell my listeners your informed vote matters.

Pennfield Schools sent out the following email after the online survey was completed:

Pennfield families,

On Monday, January 17th, the Pennfield Schools Board of Education approved a motion for universal masking at Pennfield Schools during school hours only that is effective from January 24 - February 18, 2022. This approved motion was contingent on a majority vote of approval from the school community.

From Tuesday, January 18th to Wednesday, January 19th at 5pm, a poll was available to Pennfield parents, guardians, and staff. 1,041 votes were collected with 57.5% (599) of respondents approving the Board’s motion.

Starting Monday, January 24th, all students and staff will be required to wear a mask during school hours through February 18th.

Masks will not be required for after school activities or athletic events; they will remain highly recommended.

The school will have masks available for students who do not have access to one.

If a student or staff member is unable to wear a mask for a medical reason, a doctor’s note will be needed for such an exception.

Interesting to note like other schools districts that are mandating the wearing of masks does not apply to after-school activities or athletic events.

Are they mandating only n95 masks or better because the science very clearly states anything less than the n95 is ineffective?

Dr. Michael Osterholm, University of Minnesota Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy Director and Top Covid-19 adviser to Biden stated during a CNN interview that cloth or paper masks don't work to stop the spread of the Covid-19 virus.  Dr. Osterholm then stated:

We know today that many of the face cloth coverings that people wear are not very effective in reducing any of the virus movement in or out…We need to talk about better masking.  We need to talk about N-95 respirators, which would do a lot for both people who are not yet vaccinated or not previously infected.

Chad Roy, a microbiologist at Tulane University School of Medicine, referring to the virus spreading through the air stated:

Cloth and surgical masks do absolutely nothing for protection from ambient virus...All this song and dance of wearing cloth masks with some presumption that you're being protected from ambient virus is completely and positively 100% counter to how masks and respirators work.

Too bad no one follows science any longer

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