Brevard school board member credits mask mandate with decreasing district quarantines

Vaccination rate, according to the county, for ages 12-19 is 45 percent

VIERA, Fla. – Brevard County school board member Jennifer Jenkins said the district’s mask mandate and the change in contact tracing from six feet to three feet reduced quarantines by the thousands.

Friday’s COVID-19 dashboard reported 1,100 quarantines from Tuesday to Thursday. It was more than 4,000 two weeks ago.

“We’ve seen a decrease in our numbers significantly,” Jenkins said. ‘’I just hope over the next two weeks we don’t see another spike, and I’m glad we are where we are but the fight isn’t over,” she continued.

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The 30-days of the mask mandate would conclude at the end of the month and the policy would be revisited.

More contention at school board meetings is expected however the board votes next.

Thursday night, board chair Misty Belford called for a speaker to be removed when she kept talking beyond the three minutes each speaker usually gets during public comment.

The speaker yelled, “tyranny” as she was shown the door.

The district again addressed the mandate Friday at the county’s COVID-19 news conference.

BPS Senior Coordinator Katherine Allen said the district knows the mandate was an unpopular decision to one side of the argument.

‘’We know that there’s a lot of opinions, but we need to do whatever we can to slow the spread and keep our kids in school where they’re learning,” Allen said.

The vaccination rate, according to the county, for ages 12-19 is 45 percent.

The health department Friday said that number was very low.

About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.