Coronavirus Masks & Students: Florida Data Sheds Light on Effectiveness

In late summer, as the Delta variant of the coronavirus surged through the American South, Victoria Defenthaler kept a close eye on the data in her Florida community. Cases of COVID-19 had spiked about 600 percent since June. Defenthaler was worried.

A member of the Martin County school board on the state’s Treasure Coast, Defenthaler warned that the district’s mitigation efforts might not be enough. She tried and failed to convince other board members to bring in health-department officials to provide counsel.

And she urged her colleagues to defy Governor Ron DeSantis and reinstitute a school mask mandate. Neighboring school districts were

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