WMC Mask Mandate is Lifted!

New Jersey Gov. Phillip Murphy and Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson spoke after a meeting at the White House

New Jersey Gov. Phillip Murphy and Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson spoke after a meeting at the White House

On Monday, February 7th, 2022, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy made the announcement that as of March 7th, 2022, the mask mandate in schools will be lifted and the decision to wear masks will be optional. Murphy hopes to put an end to the very controversial topic of masks in schools and also take a step back to normalcy. He knows that we have not defeated the virus but rather have learned to live with it. “This is not a declaration of victory as much as an acknowledgment that we can responsibly live with this thing,” Murphy announced on Monday. 


Knowing the controversy around this decision, Murphy explains that each school district will have the option to reinforce the mandate if levels begin to spike again. Mr. Rymer updated WMC’s mask policies following Murphy’s ruling, allowing masks to become optional for all students and staff starting March 7th. 


The topic soon became the talk of the school as it is almost unimaginable to walk into school without masks on. It has also spiked controversial conversation between those questioning if this was really the best decision to make. I decided to talk to a couple of my friends, one who is choosing to wear a mask, and one who is not. I wanted to get their reasoning behind their decision to help broaden my understanding as well as possibly help someone who is undecided come to a conclusion. Here they are:


“On March 7th, I am choosing not to wear a mask at school. I feel that since I have already had covid, as have most other people it is not necessary. I support those who will continue to wear their masks, but after 2 years of wearing one, I personally think it is time for them to go. I am hoping for a sense of normalcy to return to the school, and I am excited to see real smiling faces around the halls.” –anonymous student


“(I will wear a mask.) It is a comfort thing for me and I feel as though it protects other people. I am open to moving away from wearing the mask soon though.” anonymous student


While many people’s decisions are subject to change, it is still interesting to see the difference of opinions and personal choices in our school. Even though this step back into normalcy may be hard to adjust to, it is our job as a school and community to ensure everyone is comfortable with their decision and no one is shamed for how they walk into school on the 7th.