Sunday, October 1, 2023

Gov. Youngkin Signs Bill Ending School Mask Mandates

Gov. Youngkin has signed SB 739, which ends universal student masking in Virginia’s public school systems starting no later than March 1. (Photo by CDC from Pexels)

STATEWIDE — Gov. Glenn Youngkin has signed the bill allowing parents to opt out of school mask mandates for their students starting no later than March 1.

The Virginia House of Delegates gave final approval to Senate Bill 739 on Wednesday, Feb. 16, making masks in school optional by March 1.

The Governor added the provision which grants school divisions two weeks to develop policies to comply with the parental opt-out to ensure, “a smooth, orderly transition for parents, teacher, staff, and local school leaders,” a Youngkin aide told WYDaily on Tuesday.

During the bill signing ceremony Wednesday, Youngkin said that the bill is “restoring power back to parents” and “reestablishing expectations that we are getting back to normal.”

“Since day one, we have been advocating, we have been standing up together for parents’ rights to make decisions for their children,” Youngkin said. “We are reaffirming the rights that we know all parents have, the fundamental rights to make decisions for your children, for their education, for their upbringing and for their care.”

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