The Avery County Board of Education voted unanimously Tuesday night in favor of optional wearing of masks or other facial coverings for all students, teachers and staff in the county’s public-school buildings.

High Country Press reports this gives parents of Avery students the right to decide whether or not their children wear face coverings when inside those facilities.

Masks will continue to be required on all regular school and activity buses. All visitors will be admitted by appointment only.

According to the report, Avery Superintendent Dr. Dan Brigman said in a statement to parents, that the decision was made to realign with the NC Department of Health and Human Services and Governor Cooper to strongly recommend wearing face masks, but will be optional for all staff and students effective Wednesday.