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Billings school trustees rescind mask policy

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Posted at 8:32 AM, Jul 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-26 10:32:17-04

The Billings Public Schools trustees voted Monday to rescind a controversial policy regarding face masks in schools.

The policy is currently dormant, but it raised hackles among parents while it was in place during the height of the pandemic.

Policy 1905 required school staff and students to wear the masks except in certain situations when it was first passed in January of 2021-- when the COVID-19 pandemic was still raging.

It was amended one year ago to give the superintendent discretion on whether face coverings would be required.

In August 2021, just days before the start of the school year, Superintendent Greg Upham implemented the face-mask order in all Billings schools following a COVID-19 outbreak at Billings Skyview.

Upham rescinded the mask mandate in February.

Some parents-- who were for optional or no masks at all-- had argued that giving the superintendent-- who is not elected-- sole discretion in the matter took away what should have been the board's responsibility.