SHELBURN, Ind. (WTHI) - One Wabash Valley school district is reversing its decision to make masks optional.
The move comes as COVID-19 cases are rising.
Northeast North School Corporation held an emergency meeting on Thursday.
In that meeting, the board made masks mandatory.
That is for all students and staff throughout the district.
However, there is an exception.
It is only when six feet of social distancing is not possible.
The scene was different in the Northeast North School Corporation's meeting when they announced masks would be required again.
While other school boards saw divided votes and tempers flaring, Northeast North was a different story.
Don Ransford is a school board member of Northeast North, and he says masking was the best option.
"We feel like this is going to give us a handle on a problem that's happened since school began," said Ransford.
He was one of the five voting in the unanimous decision to bring masks back.
The board says that doing so when six feet of social distancing is not possible, is the middle ground that brought many parents together.
While we were there, several parents wore masks.
We found only two who did not.
Also, the only people we saw speak at the meeting from the public were in favor of masks.
One parent says this shouldn't be a political issue.
"I don't care what side of the aisle you are on, we have got to do something different," said the parent.
She says she has noticed more resistance from other parents, and little resistance from students she's interacted with.
"Not one child I've talked to or been around had a problem with their masks until they saw how their parents were acting about their masks."
The board said the reason they're imposing this is for two reasons:
One is the new executive order from Governor Holcomb incentivizing schools to mask up.
The order exempts students and staff from quarantines if they are masking and exposed to COVID-19.
That is only if they do not show symptoms.
The second is to limit quarantines.
The school board says it has had problems with high quarantines recently.
"We want our students in school. That's where learning takes place the best. We have a great virtual system, but it's not going to be comparable to in the classroom," said Ransford.
While we were at this meeting, the board emphasized that they want to create a middle-ground here.
They say that mandating masks at all times would be too polarizing.
The mandate will go into effect on Sept. 7.