Whitmer Pushes Masking for Kindergarteners – Again

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The debate about masking school children, even kindergarteners, is heating up again.

No, the science hasn’t changed. Young children remain the least susceptible to contracting COVID-19 and to spreading it, and the few who do get it tend to suffer minor symptoms – if any.

As we approach the start of the school year, though, union politics and the governor’s campaign donors have been weighing in and flexing their muscle.

The result this week was a new set of recommendations from Whitmer and her health department, who are pushing every elementary school in the state to make masks a requirement for every student.

What’s best for students doesn’t appear to matter.

Masking young children hasn’t proven to deliver any real health benefit, but it’s contributed to lost learning, to stalled social and emotional development, and to a devastating mental health crisis enveloping Michigan’s kids.

The new recommendations came just days after the Governor and legislative Democrats slashed $155 million in education funding from struggling readers because union activists didn’t like it.

The Whitmer administration has proven repeatedly this summer that it’s more interested in making her partisan political allies happy then delivering for kids who are counting on her. Students will continue to pay the price.

Beth DeShone
Executive Director, Great Lakes Education Project

Mask mandates in schools are about politics. They’re about keeping the Governor’s special interest allies happy, and they’re about flexing their muscle against parents who know their kids, their health history, and their education needs better than anyone.

Local districts and local parents are fighting back against broad, unscientific mandates. They’re showing up at lawmakers’ coffee hours, they’re flooding school board meetings, and many are pulling their students out of traditional public schools.

Education is supposed to focus on students, not systems. When Governor Whitmer and the partisan adults surrounding her put bureaucratic control above children, parents and families, they do the kind of harm that can last a lifetime.





Get ready. Governor Whitmer’s recommendation that every school in the state institute mask mandates is coming to a school board meeting near you. Attend. Speak up. Fight back. Your voice matters!