Hannibal Schools will be mask optional

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by Jim Dewey

HANNIBAL – Masks will be optional at Hannibal Public Schools when classes resume next month.

During Wednesday’s meeting of the Hannibal Board of Education, Superintendent Susan Johnson said after much research and consultation with members of the community, state and federal officials and other school districts, she was recommending that students, faculty and staff be given the option of wearing a mask regardless of their vaccination status. The board agreed unanimously. 

That vote on the “Return to Learn Plan” came after more than a dozen residents spoke out against a mask mandate. Most of those speaking claimed children’s health was more endangered by the masks than by the covid 19 virus.

The board also approved a plan to replace the scoreboard at Porter Stadium. Work has been ongoing this summer to replace the turf at the stadium.

The board also heard from three residents who spoke against the teaching of Critical Race Theory in the Hannibal School District. That issue was not on the board agenda and no action was taken.

 The board tabled action on an update of the district’s Code of Conduct. A committee led by Athletic Director Clint Graham has reviewed the Code of Conduct and has offered two options of revisions for the board to consider. Board members said they needed more time to look over the changes. Since several fall sports will already be underway before the August meeting, Superintendent Johnson said any changes in the Code will not go into effect until the winter sports seasons.

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