Parents await decision on summer masking at Appleton Area Schools

Published: May. 25, 2021 at 8:32 PM CDT|Updated: May. 25, 2021 at 8:40 PM CDT
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APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - As kids prepare for summer school programs, the debate over masking and other COVID-19 restrictions has many parents sounding off.

Area districts are divided on the issue.

In the Appleton Area School district, a decision on summer school masking is likely to be made the first week of June.

However, when it comes to the fall, some parents say it’s frustrating not knowing what to expect.

“I am here to say I am so incredibly disappointed to be in the exact same spot that I was in one year ago,” said Mindy Monfils of Appleton during a school board meeting Monday night.

The deadline for open enrollment is June 30th.

That means parents might not have adequate information before having to decide whether to have their kids stay in the district, or attend classes elsewhere, basing it on what COVID-19 restrictions could be in place.

Monfils added, “I am tired of tuning into these meetings and hearing our school board say things like well, we will see what happens, we will start to plan to plan. Let’s see what Green Bay decides to do.”

Assistant Superintendent of Student Services Polly Vanden Boogaard said, “You have the mix of students and staff that are vaccinated, as well as quite a large group of students who aren’t vaccinated and don’t have the vaccination yet available to them, so it’s a balancing of all of those pieces of guidance and information we have coming at us.”

In Kimberly, the school board voted to drop it’s mask mandate for summer school classes, but hasn’t said what will happen this fall.

The Oshkosh School Board will meet on Wednesday.

Online documents show they will keep their masking requirement, but relax a policy requiring kids to quarantine who might have been exposed to a positive case.

Some parents in Appleton are also asking for a return to in person meetings.

“If you are going to make decisions, you own the consequences. Even now, I’m speaking on a Zoom call, where you don’t have to look at my face,” a parent told the school board.

The superintendent’s office told Action 2 News on Tuesday afternoon that a plan for the fall, likely won’t go before the Appleton Area School Board until later this summer and after the June 30th open enrollment deadline.

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