San Ramon students head back to school after some criticize mask mandate

More districts are welcoming students back to school on Monday, including at Iron Horse Middle School in San Ramon where the superintendent will greet children after facing a room of upset parents last week over masks. 

During a San Ramon Valley Unified District meeting last Tuesday, parents against the school mask mandate wanted to make their voices heard and did so by arguing and booing over a state requirement requiring that masks be worn indoors for all people regardless of vaccination status. 

Some parents criticized board members and the superintendent for following the governor's order, a Contra Costa County order, along with guidance from the CDC that masks must be worn inside. They said they aren't convinced that a mask mandate is the best decision. 
"In my opinion, the masks over the last 18 months has dramatically affected their lives, psychologically, emotionally and with playing with their friends," one father said at the meeting. 

Despite the complaints, masks are still required in schools and vaccinations are encouraged, but not required, for staff and teens in the district.

The school district is also offering a virtual academy for families not yet ready to return to full-time, in-person instruction.