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Expect more school boards to take ‘measured approach’ to masks, political analyst says

School leaders and city leaders have different considerations when they determine if they want to develop policies that adhere to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order on mask mandates.
School leaders and city leaders have different considerations when they determine if they want to develop policies that adhere to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order on mask mandates.

School leaders and city leaders have different considerations when they determine if they want to develop policies that adhere to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order on mask mandates.

“It’s highly unlikely that you’ll see many of those school boards take on the governor due to funding,” explained News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney. “You may see a few high profile school districts, maybe Alachua County, Broward that may be more likely to take on the governor or be at odds, but in general expect more school boards to take a measured approach.”

In cities and counties, it’s a little different. And more Democratic-leaning areas like Miami-Dade County might be willing to rebuke DeSantis on mandates.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry has said his decisions are not simply to be in line with the governor.

“I don’t see politics at play from my perspective in my city at all,” Curry said. “We had a mask mandate in place last summer that I imposed through executive order.”

Other Republican lawmakers are also speaking out publicly to back Desantis’ position of no mandates. That includes Republican Congressman John Rutherford who tweeted:

“I’m proud to live in the FREE state of Florida. Thank you @GovRonDeSantis for your leadership and unwavering support of individual liberty.”

This comes after DeSantis has been heavily criticized by many in the state including his potential challengers for governor. Former Gov. Charlie Crist and current Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, both Democrats who have filed to run for Governor, have regularly lambasted the governor over his recent handling of the pandemic.


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Specializes in Clay County issues, general assignment reporting and stories off the beaten path and anchors weekend evening newscasts.