FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Millions of students in Florida, Texas and Arizona are being required to wear masks in class as school boards in mostly Democratic locales are imposing anti-COVID mandates in defiance of their Republican governors. The three states are all hot spots in the nation’s recent COVID-19 surge and defiant boards in Miami, Dallas, Houston, Phoenix and elsewhere argue that requiring masks protects students from contracting and spreading the virus as pediatric hospitals fill. Govs. Ron DeSantis of Florida, Greg Abbott of Texas and Doug Ducey of Arizona argue that children are safe without masks and such decisions should be left up to parents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and most pediatric medicine organizations support masking.
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