Back-to-school sales and signs are all over, but this isn't going to be a typical scholastic new year in New Jersey. One town wants Governor Murphy to butt out. 

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Last week, Governor Phil Murphy issued an order that will require all students and staff to wear a mask in schools to prevent the spread of COVID.

This mandate from the Gov made many unhappy, and one Monmouth County school district is saying something about it.

Your blanket orders do not reflect what is in the best interest of the students and staff and infringe on home rule. We as a board have had some parents tell us how masks are negatively affecting their children’s psychological and emotional well-being, as well as making it harder to learn and concentrate. Parents have expressed concerns over masking students for six hours per day.

The statement went on to say:

Everybody believes it’s a home rule issue and it should be made at the local level. We’ve had many, many parents come to board meetings saying that they don’t want their children in masks, but we’ve also had parents email us saying that they’re in favor of mask mandates. Both sides of the equation are fine. We believe that it should be a local decision.

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That is from Wall Township School board president Ralph Addonizio.

According to, Wall Township was planning on announcing that masks would be optional for the 21-22 school year. That is until Governor Murphy made his statewide decision.

Wall Township is not alone. For months, Murphy said that he would allow districts to decide what is best for students and staff before issuing a blanket order.

A new stat out from State Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli has less than 50% of eligible kids ages 12 to 18 with full vaccinations.

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Wall Township says that if Murphy reverses his order, they will make masks optional and even change course if it becomes necessary.

What are your feelings on the statewide school mask mandate? Share your thoughts with me.

Are These New Jersey Towns Mandating Masks? They are considered the 25 Best Places To Live in New Jersey

Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in New Jersey using data from Niche. Niche ranks places to live based on a variety of factors including cost of living, schools, health care, recreation, and weather. Cities, suburbs, and towns were included. Listings and images are from

On the list, there's a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.