Dozens of parents went home angry and confused from a special Wayne School Board meeting after the board decided to take no action on the state imposed mask mandate for school kids.

The board did take a vote on a letter drafted by BOE attorney John Geppert. Four members voted to send the letter to Governor Phil Murphy asking him to repeal his mask mandate. Three members voted against it.

That should have been enough to pass it, right? Wrong.

Board member Suzanne Pudup decided to abstain.

Superintendent of Wayne Schools Dr. Mark Toback told that five votes were needed to pass the measure, and since it only got four, no letter would be sent to the governor.

The Board has heard from a substantial number of community members at its recent public meetings. Many of those participating in the public comment portion have expressed concerns regarding Executive Order No. 251 and its requirement that students, staff and visitors wear masks in the indoor portion of school premises. After considering the concerns expressed by those individuals, the undersigned members of the Wayne Township Board of Education request that the mask mandate set forth in Executive Order No. 251 be rescinded and masks be made optional for all students, staff and visitors. - Letter rejected by the Wayne BOE

The mask mandate has deeply divided parents in Wayne. As the anti-mask parents became louder and dominated recent school board meetings, a group of parents who support the mask mandate started thier own movement.

Dueling petitions were launched. The pro-mask parents declared "victory" after last night's meeting.

The number of people supporting both petitions closely mirrored a recent poll from Monmouth University showing nearly 70% of parents support having kids mask-up in school.

The petition for masks garnered 1,720 signatures. The petition against masks had fewer than 1,000 signatures


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