Jill's Journal: What's the right decision?

Jill Meier, Journal editor

As you may have read on page one of this issue, the kids are slated to go back to school on Wednesday, Aug. 19. But that doesn’t mean that all 4,000-plus of the expected students will be sitting in desks in our school buildings. Families in the Brandon Valley School District have the option to choose distance learning for the first semester, if not the entire school year.

It’s one of several safety precautions the school district has put in place for the upcoming year as we continue to battle through the coronavirus pandemic.

And while masks will not be required, our district administrators are highly encouraging kids, staff and the public to wear them.

I saw many face masks in use at Sunday’s commencement exercises. I, too, strapped on a mask that day.

I wear one to church on Sundays, when I wheel my shopping cart around the local grocery store and when appropriate, such as when I meet with advertisers and sources for the stories I will be writing.

If I’m honest, I don’t particularly care to wear a mask. But I do know that the science clearly shows it can help to curb the spread of the coronavirus. And I do know that I’m more than ready to get back to life of normalcy, as “normal” as life will be in the weeks, months, possibly years to come.

As you may have read on page two of this issue, two our Brandon Valley Journal readers are clearly passionate about folks wearing a mask in public. I applaud them both for speaking up, sharing their opinions and backing them up with statistics that clearly show masks, good hygiene and social distancing will make a positive difference.

Here’s where it gets a bit sticky, though. Because masks are optional in many facets of our lives – school, church, work and even play – each man, woman and child has varying opinions of what’s the best decision for themselves and the people they are surrounded by. But if a simple mask has the ability to lessen the spread and speed up our return to “normalcy,” you can bet I’ll be wearing the mask and kindly encouraging others to do the same.


The Brandon Valley Journal


The Brandon Valley Journal
1404 E. Cedar St.
Brandon, SD 57005
(605) 582-9999

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