New Mask Rules Are Shocking Freedom


Photo by Hope Nguyen.

Photo of mask on a desk.

Hope Nguyen, Staff Writer

On Feb. 16, a Loudoun County Circuit Court Judge granted an injunction, essentially overturning LCPS’s mask policy. Now students have the option to wear a mask or not. Unvaccinated employees will still be required to wear masks while the transmission is still highly spreadable. The previous measures will remain in place, officials have clarified. 

Masks are still required on buses, and any preschool programs still require them. Any students enrolled who previously got suspended for failing to comply with the mandate will have their records expunged.

Many people have argued that since the nation was founded on individual liberties, and that one should have the right to do what they want with their own body, it is only natural masks should be optional.

The new policy has thrown people for a loop. Many are confused, surprised, relieved, perhaps angry at this sudden change. Especially Freedom High School students. 

 “I don’t particularly like [masks], but I feel it’s better for safety,” said sophomore Tessa Geiger.

Many studies have come out since the start of the pandemic that do confirm masks help stop the spread of COVID-19. Giving others the option to not wear one may do more harm than good, especially since the rate of COVID-19 is still high.

Some people just don’t like masks and have valid reasons for why they do. 

“I feel like it might be difficult for people to hear others, or maybe its uncomfortable to wear [a mask] for long amounts of time,” said sophomore Cheyanne Tongue. “And it could also be bothersome.”

There are many reasons for why people don’t like masks, from the uncomfortable breathing, medical issues that may make wearing a mask difficult, or some believing that masks may not help much, if at all. 

“They [people] don’t understand the implications of what not wearing a mask will do to the county,”  Geiger said. “I feel there will be a rise in COVID cases and more people will act arrogant.”

There are still many others who choose to wear a mask everyday.

“People who want to wear a mask can still wear it,” Tongue said. “I think it could bring in a good outcome.”

There are still quite a bit of mixed opinions about the new policy. Some positive, others negative.

“I think it should be required,” Geiger said. “[I feel it will bring] a bad outcome.”

The question of whether students personally believe masks should be optional or not is still an ongoing debate. 

“I would lean more towards yes, but I would still wear it if it was optional,” Tongue said. 

Wearing a mask is now people’s personal choice, and only they can decide for themselves what they want to do with their body.