8-year-old will ask school district for a mask warrant after being bullied for wearing one

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Missouri – An 8-year-old elementary school student plans to apply for a mask warrant at Windsor C1 Schools on Wednesday after being bullied for wearing a mask.

At this time, masks are optional at Windsor C1 schools. Children have the choice of coming to class wearing one or not. But for 8-year-old Everylee Cox, a student at James E. Freer Elementary School, the choice is not negotiable.

“I do it to keep people safe, but not only, to also make sure people don’t get sick,” she said.

Cox said she was one of the few children in her class to wear a mask. Unfortunately, this made her stand out from bullies, one of whom went so far as to push her against a door during recess.

“He didn’t really say anything, all he did was just push me against the door and walk away,” Cox said. “I’ve seen him look at me sideways when I’m wearing it and when we’re in line for lunch.”

In a statement, Windsor C1 Schools Superintendent Joel Holland said: “All allegations of bullying in our schools are taken seriously and the situation has been dealt with and resolved promptly.”

But that’s not enough for Everylee and her family. She goes on to say that this has happened to some of her friends as well, which prompted her to consider applying for a mask warrant at Wednesday’s school board meeting.

“I mean, she’s the one who has to go through this every day. It’s not me, us as parents; we are not the ones who go to school. It’s her, it’s these kids; so I feel like if they hear what she’s feeling, maybe that could trigger something, ”said Shirley Thomas, Everylee’s mom.

Everylee and her mother will speak alongside three other children.

“I don’t want to be silent, I mean, if that’s the only thing we can do,” Thomas said.

It comes as Jefferson County reaches the highest number of child COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, with more than 237 children under the age of 19 testing positive.

Young children like Everylee are not yet eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. That’s why wearing a mask and getting others to do the same is Everylee’s best hope.

The school board meeting will be held at Windsor High School on Wednesday evening at 7 p.m.

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