Local women make, donate masks designed for grade-school students

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — A pair of Texoma women are making it their mission to create washable, fitted masks for students.

Each mask is hand-made and donated based on need in the Wichita Falls Independent School District.

Antoinette Boynton and Tina Bowles have sent more than 450 masks to schools, with nearly 1,200 requests coming in.

Boynton first took her sewing skills to make masks for students at Ben Franklin Elementary.

She said after people expressed that the need for masks goes beyond just Ben Franklin, Boynton quickly expanded her idea to provide masks for other schools in the school district as well.

“There were issues surrounding masks, their sizes, the styles, the composition of the masks,” Boynton said.

After doing some research, Boynton decided she’d be a part of making sure each and every student has access to fitted, washable masks.

“I contacted the TEA [Texas Education Agency], they gave me numbers that were disheartening for masks that were for our district,” Boynton said.

Boynton said she believes the disposable ones are not the right size nor the right material.

“We will continue to make these masks, they are the proper two-layer, 100% cotton, washable masks,” Boynton said. “Every mask we make has a lanyard attached to it that is removable.”

However, WFISD Superintendent Michael Kuhrt said the district has plenty of masks to provide.

Boynton said it’s not always feasible for families to send their kids to school with different masks each day.

“There are six schools in our district that are considered low income,” Boynton said. “These parents live on a tight budget, they don’t have the extra money that it takes to provide five masks, one new mask every day for their children.”

Boynton said she’ll continue making the masks as long as she sees a need.

Boynton said requests need to come from school staff so that the school can distribute.

You can contact Boynton through her Facebook page called ‘The School Masketters.’

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