POLL: Most Parents Support Mask Requirements In Schools For Unvaccinated Students And Staff

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Melanie Wilcox Contributor
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Most parents support mask requirements for unvaccinated students and staff at schools, according to a poll published Wednesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

About 63% of parents who have school-aged children think schools should require unvaccinated students and staff to wear masks, although most Republican parents – 69% — oppose such requirements, the poll found. Parents of unvaccinated children are evenly divided on the issue. (RELATED: DeSantis Threatens To Withhold Salaries Of School Officials Who Enforce Mask Mandates)

The Kaiser Family Foundation poll surveyed 1,259 parents of children under the age of 18 from July 15 to Aug. 2 and was funded, in part, by grants from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Ford Foundation, and the Molina Family Foundation. The margin of error is plus or minus four percentage points.

About 58% of parents who have children ages 12 to 17 say their child’s school should not require students to be vaccinated, according to the poll. The poll also found that about 54% of parents of all school-age children say schools should not require vaccines even when the Food and Drug Administration approves it for children.

Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Board of Education approved an emergency measure on Aug. 6 that allows parents to use vouchers to transfer their kids out of schools enforcing mask mandates. Parents can transfer their children to another school or another district in Florida if a “student has been subjected to harassment or other qualifying adverse, intimidating treatment” regarding masks, according to the new emergency rule announcement.

However, in Texas, two major school districts — including Dallas Independent School Districts and Austin Independent School District — are defying Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order restricting mask mandates in schools, and implementing them anyway. 

In July, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued COVID-19 guidelines stating that even if fully vaccinated two-year-olds should wear masks. Fauci appeared on CBS in July and said the AAP’s recommendation was “an extra step of caution.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends all people over 2 years old wear masks if they are not vaccinated.