SWFL private Catholic schools will demand masks
A governor’s decree says public schools can’t impose masks, but what about private schools?
They’re not part of that order, so they make their own rules, and on Thursday the Diocese of Venice did just that. He made indoor masks mandatory temporarily in all Catholic schools in counties with high positivity rates, including southwest Florida.
When it comes to parenting, Rochelle Joslin, a parent at Bishop Verot High School, said she knows how to choose what’s best for her child.
âI used the right to choose to come to your school. Give me the right to choose what is best for my child when it comes to a mask versus no mask, âshe said.
But the diocese of Venice does not leave this choice to parents. Leaders released a letter Thursday night saying masks are mandatory indoors temporarily in all Catholic schools with positivity rates of 10% or more. This includes Lee County, which is home to Bishop Verot.
âI am the parent, I can make the health choices for my child. They don’t need to do this for us, âJoslin said.
âNow I have no choice but to send my son to school where you made a last minute decision that made no sense. “
James Didio’s children go to Saint Francis Xavier in Fort Myers. He said his family were delighted that masks were optional at school before the diocese issued his warrant.
âI think the masks are a bit of a distraction which is why we were delighted to have them as an option at this point. Our option is no mask.
Dr Bernard Ashby, Florida state official for the Committee to Protect Healthcare, said masks are essential right now with variants soaring. He congratulated the diocese for its decision.
âIn the hospital the patients are younger and they are really, really sick coming in due to the delta variant being a lot more transmissible,â he said.
Didio said he hopes the numbers will drop so the masks can be put away.
“We need those numbers to go down, so let’s hope and pray that they do, it gives us a glimmer of hope that we won’t be in office all year.”
According to the bishop’s letter, it depends on the community. Reduce the case numbers, the masks may disappear.
Didio and other parents have said they might consider transferring their children to a private school where masks remain optional, such as Canterbury, Southwest Florida Christian Academy and Classical Christian Academy, to name a few.