The Backstory

This is the story of why and how we decided to stand up to unmask our son and his classmates.

  • We accepted masking our son at school as a short-term, concession to get him back to in-person learning.

  • Although it became increasingly obvious that COVID had run its natural course and masks did nothing to change the outcomes, Indiana politicians and health officials continued to cling to masks even as other states were abandoning their mandates with great success. We decided it was time to fight to get the mask off our son now.

  • We were left with little time to respond to the notification that our superintendent intends to recommend a mask mandate for students 12 and under (received July 27, 2021 to be voted on by the ZCS Board of Trustees July 29, 2021 and enacted for the start of the 2021-2022 school year next Tuesday, Aug.3) Therefor, we have made the decision to extend our proposal introduction of 9-point plan for ZCS to unmask our children to our community prior to being able to present to our ZCS administration and the Board before the special meeting being held tomorrow night. 

  • Ideally, we would have presented our plan proposal and had conversation with our ZCS administration and Board before extending the plan introduction to our community. However, the just was not enough time.

  • We will be presenting a plan to the ZCS administration and board of education (BOT), with seriousness and respect.

  • We expanded the original unmasking plan introduction into an Open Letter that people can sign to show their support for this effort. 

We invite you to stand with us!

Read the Long Version Below

Kids Running

The Long Version

Like many parents, we have been angered and frustrated by the draconian response to COVID, which has precipitated more child suffering around the world than any other cause we know of.

So when the ZCS administration announced they were opening school in 2020, with full-day, in-person classes, we were relieved and grateful to have local school leaders who were in tune with reality and the needs of children and families. They had worked hard to develop a plan that would give our son and his classmates as much normality as possible, while still taking precautions to help fearful students, parents, and staff gain confidence in the safety of being back at school.

We were irritated by the universal masking requirement, but figured the district’s hands were tied by our governor’s mask mandate. We grudgingly accepted this distasteful concession with the expectation that elected and health officials would soon come to their senses as the virus naturally receded due to seasonality, or after the election was over and we no longer had to pretend it was the end of the world to unseat a president.

The good news is our district administration continued to display solid leadership and common sense by never once closing our schools, and by reinstating more group activities and events as the year went on. We took this as a positive sign that district administrators were serious about getting back to normal, and crossed our fingers that masks would soon be gone.

Our goal is to encourage action with solutions and support, rather than merely demand that somebody else do something. Serendipitously, we discovered a thoughtful, detailed plan for unmasking children that Emily Burns, a mom in Massachusetts, wrote as part of a 4-part series for The Smile Project. It was the perfect tool to initiate dialogue with the ZCS administration and BOT.

We hope to present it to the administration and board of trustees as soon as permitted and tweak Emily’s plan to target it to our community.

Simultaneously, we want to engage more parent and community support to help fuel momentum for this effort – especially now that the statewide mask mandate is gone! So we are expanding the unmasking action plan introduction into an Open Letter that people can sign and share with others.

We invite you to stand with us in fighting for our children, supporting our schools, and bringing normal back to our community!


We Need Your Support Today!