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Dan Forest pushes for schools to reopen without mask mandate

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Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 3:44 PM EDT
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RALEIGH. (AP) - Republican gubernatorial candidate Dan Forest has called for all North Carolina K-12 public schools to reopen without requiring students or teachers to wear masks.

At a Wednesday morning news conference, he said he would not mandate masks if he were governor and wants the state to move quickly to Plan A so everyone can have 100% in-person learning.

The current directive from Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper allows school districts to partially reopen under Plan B, but also gives local school boards the option to stay fully remote under Plan C.

Following the news conference, Cooper for NC spokesperson Liz Doherty released a statement reading, “Dan Forest is promising to put students, teachers and families in harm’s way immediately without any safety precautions because he cares more about politics than people. His dangerous plans and spread of misinformation, especially his insistence that masks don’t work, would set us back in our fight against COVID.”

Federal health officials have encouraged mask wearing as an effective method of containing the spread of COVID-19.

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