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VERNON HILLS, Ill. — As parents and students continue to protest against the state’s mask mandate, a group stood in front of Hawthorn Middle South to rally against masks on Tuesday.

The group of parents think masks are doing more harm than good.

“We just feel like it’s important that they knew that mask optional is wanted by many of the parents in the community,” John Hetezel said.

Some retired teachers were in the group, holding signs against masking.

“There are some teachers that want these masks off,” Linda Knezovich said. “The kids need to breathe that I tutor. They have asthma.”

Protests in several districts across the area have already happened following a downstate judge’s ruling — which gave 120 school districts freedom from the state’s mask mandate.

During Oak Lawn school district 218’s board meeting Monday night, parents walked out and called board members “pigs.”

The state’s mask mandate is set to be lifted on Feb. 28. The decision to lift the mandate in schools has not been decided at this time.