The School District of Osceola County Board Meeting began with a roar – intended to show support for Superintendent Dr. Debra Pace, whose performance evaluation was on the meeting’s agenda. But, before that discussion,  there would be hours of discussion on numerous other subjects, including whether their optional mask-wearing policy was to be continued.

It was in the last minutes of the meeting that the mask policy was changed to one very similar to what Orange County has in place. Beginning Monday, and lasting 30 calendar days, Osceola County Public Schools will require students to wear masks for K-8 students.

Toward the end of the meeting Board Member Terry Castillo shared, “a lot of parents have emailed me, asking what we can do to make our students safer. I’m not necessarily saying that we do exactly what Orange County is doing, or Volusia County, but I do think that not discussing it would be irresponsible, because that is what is being asked by the people I serve.”

The discussion led by Castillo along with board member Julius Melendez ended with a motion being passed by a 4-1 vote, with Board member Jon Arguello voting against.

Students can opt-out of wearing a mask if they have written permission from their parents.

Masks will continue to be optional for high school students.