Iredell-Statesville schools latest to vote masks optional as CDC reverses guidance

IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. — Iredell-Statesville Schools is the latest district in the Charlotte area to go mask-optional for students and staff.

The school board voted unanimously Wednesday morning to allow parents to make the decision themselves.

The meeting lasted only 20 minutes and Channel 9 could not find a single parent in attendance who wanted the mask requirements in place.

The board joined almost every county in our area so far and voted to give parents the option.

Before voting, the school board heard a presentation giving them options between requiring masks for the upcoming school year and making it optional.

>> CLICK HERE for masks rules from other local districts.

One concern was that if a school experienced an outbreak and the students weren’t masked, more would be required to quarantine, missing valuable instruction time.

At the height of the pandemic last year, 400 students and staff were having to quarantine.

The superintendent still has the power to require masks in the classroom if there is a large outbreak.

>> Several students showed up at Wednesday’s meeting as well, and you can watch reporter Dave Faherty’s full report on Channel 9 at 5 p.m. to hear their reaction to the board’s decision.

Other schools will decide their mask-wearing policies in the coming days.

Avery County and Burke County schools will meet on Thursday to talk about mask-wearing policies, while Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools called a special meeting for Friday morning.

(WATCH BELOW: Handful of local school districts lay out plans on masks in classrooms)