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MADISON COUNTY, Ala. — The Madison County school board was met at the door of their meeting by a small group of protesters; parents declaring they certainly do not approve of the district’s decision to mandate mask-wearing for students.

Agenda wise, it was a normal board meeting, but every single statement made during the public comment section of the meeting came from parents who do not want their children being forced to wear masks in schools.

“Its not a one mask fits all situation,” one parent said.

Nearly a dozen parents spoke during public comment at Thursday’s Madison County school board meeting. This comes after a mandatory mask mandate was implemented just last week. Every single parent that spoke strongly opposed the decision.

“Its anti science, it ignores common sense and most importantly it harms our children,” a parent said.

Nurse Cheri Harr and a handful of others arrived before the meeting to protest the decision.

“We must show up en masse to show support for our kids,” Harr said.

Some parents argue science does not back the effectiveness of masking.

“Masks cause anxiety, sleeplessness, fungal infections and bacterial infections,” a parent said.

Others said it’s not about that, but a parent’s right to make the final call.

“I don’t believe you’re the ones to make the medical decisions for my family or any other one of these families,” one parent said to the board.

Some parents even announced they pulled their kids out of the school system altogether.

“as of today, they are now private school kids,” One parent said to the board.

Board President Dave Weis said with more than 500 students and staff members testing positive for the virus, the board decided to take measures to protect their student body.

“Our job, our goal is to keep kids in the classroom. We don’t want them home. If they’re at home, they’re not learning as well as they’d learn in the classroom so that’s our goal and our whole purpose and intent,” Weis said.

He said once the numbers decline, things could change.

“The hope and intent is to get back to a point where we can make it optional.”

Weis said the board will revisit the mask mandate decision at the September 2 meeting and potentialy have an updated policy following that.

He said he appreciates the comments made tonight and he encourages parents to use their voice in the future, but remember to contact the Board of Education and sign up to speak three days before the next board meeting.