Gaston County School Board meets Monday to discuss mask policy

GASTON COUNTY, N.C. — Masks are once again up for discussion in another local school district -- Gaston County. The school board plans to meet Monday evening to decide whether to continue to require students and staff to wear masks in schools.

In July, the board voted to let parents decide, but in August they changed course, and voted 6-3 to require masks after 110 children tested positive for COVID-19.

The latest data from the state shows 257 school-aged children in Gaston County tested positive earlier this month.

At Monday’s evening’s board meeting, parents representing both sides are expected to try to convince board members to see their point of view.

“The Board of Education has a good team, and they need to make some good decisions,” said parent Debbie Donoghue.

Board members will likely be keeping an eye on Union County. That school board went against the NCDHHS’s quarantine policy, drawing the wrath of state health officials who threatened legal action.

There are a lot of parents who told Channel 9 they would love to see Gaston County follow suit.

“We’re just tired of obeying rules, and I think it’s time for the people to stand up and do what they want to do,” parent Nancy Harrison said.

Harrison has a daughter at Cherryville High School and said she’s upset because her daughter was quarantined because of a mistaken illness.

“I was so upset. I was, like, ‘This doesn’t make sense.’ And I still don’t have the results of the first two tests, and she missed all those days of school for absolutely no reason,” Harrison said.

Paulette Huss believes the board should stick to the current course.

“A lot of parents are against it. But as far as I’m concerned, if that’s what it takes, that’s what it takes,” Huss said.

Eyewitness News reporter Glenn Counts spoke with two board members last week. Dot Guthrie said she will listen to all the presentations and then decide how to vote. Steve Hall favors giving parents the option, but he doesn’t believe the votes are there to make a change.

The board meeting is being held at 5:30 p.m.

We’ll be monitoring the meeting, download the WSOC news app to get immediate updates sent straight your mobile device.

(WATCH BELOW: Frustration continues for parents of students at Lincoln County Schools)