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Marion Area Family Takes Stand against Mask Mandate as Three Children Suspended

MARION – A Marion area family says they’re taking a stand after their children were suspended from school for politely refusing to wear masks on the first day.

The school year has started in some districts and schools are requiring masks, per Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s recent order. He says masks are temporary, but necessary with rising COVID case rates. Asked how schools should treat students who refuse to wear a mask as he’s mandated, Gov. Pritzker Tuesday equated it to enforcing dress codes.

Marlena and Ben McCoy had their children politely refuse to wear masks Monday at Crab Orchard schools. They said at first, administrators said to just take the kids home, but the McCoys insisted that if they’re not being disciplined, their children must be in class. The administrators eventually suspended the three children. Marlena said they couldn’t standby anymore.

Aside from what they cited as religious convictions, the McCoys said they have medical concerns about their children wearing masks for eight hours a day.

Pritzker said Tuesday schools must enforce the mask mandate.