Nothing seems more urgent to Gov. Ron DeSantis (Death-FL) than preventing schools from taking steps to stop the spread of the surging Delta variant of the coronavirus.
I’m old enough to remember when Republicans believed in local control of government and school boards. But after one large school district in Florida decided to follow CDC guidance and make masks mandatory and another is considering following suit, DeSantis wants to pull out all the stops to override measures to protect children – because freedumb!
As Politico reported, DeSantis issued an order Friday leaving the choice of mask wearing to parents or guardians.
The governor said the order would direct his Department of Education and Department of Health to craft emergency rules giving parents the right to choose whether their kid wears a mask, which has been an issue amplified by DeSantis in recent weeks. Many schools in Florida are set to resume in-person learning in the coming weeks.
The governor’s moves come as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week issued new guidance on masks in schools, saying that all K-12 students should wear face coverings inside schools regardless of vaccine status. It also furthers the governor’s hands-off approach to the pandemic and follows his pledges to reject any school closures, lockdowns or Covid-mandates.
Florida is currently seeing a surge in coronavirus infections, reporting 17,589 new Covid-19 cases on Wednesday, the state’s highest mark since January. Florida is now one of the worst-hit states in the nation and makes up one in five new infections nationally.
So while Floridians get sick, DeSantis' top priority is his Trumpy image.