Thursday, October 21, 2021

Federal judge favors DeSantis over mask mandate ban

On Wednesday night, a Miami federal judge gave Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis a victory when he ruled against parents of students with disabilities in a lawsuit over the public school mask mandate.

Twelve parents from eight different Florida school districts whose children have special needs sued the governor and the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) over an executive order (PDF) that allowed parents to paint a student’s face. Allows the cover to slide out. Eight school boards in Alachua, Broward, Hillsboro, Orange, Palm Beach, Pasco, Miami-Dade and Volusia were also designated to implement the governor’s order. The federal lawsuit argued that their children are at increased risk of getting sick or dying from COVID-19 if other children attend school without wearing a face covering.

Judge K. In Michael Moore’s decision, he denied the parent’s request for a preliminary injunction against an executive order issued in July that was the catalyst for the Florida Department of Health to issue a rule (PDF), In which school districts were required to give permission. Parents to opt out of any student mask mandate. So far 13 school districts have disobeyed the governor’s order. Two counties, Broward and Alachua, have been fined for non-compliance, while the others are being investigated by the FDOE.

Moore found that parents had not finished all “treatments” at their respective schools to accommodate their children’s needs before the lawsuit was brought.

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Matthew Dietz, one of the parents’ lawyers, said he was not sure whether an appeal would be filed and expected the Biden administration to step in and bring some sort of remedy instead.

“We are disappointed with the court’s decision and are evaluating our options at this point,” Dietz said in an emailed statement. “We expect and expect that federal education officials and the US Department of Justice will weigh in on the rights of children with disabilities to safely integrate them into their local schools.”

Recently, the US Department of Education announced a grant program that provides funding for school districts in Florida (and elsewhere) that lose money for issuing “anti-coronavirus practices” such as masks. State officials were warned by the federal agency that they would investigate whether the state’s ban on mask mandates violates federal civil rights laws that protect students with disabilities.

In the past, the governor has insisted that the new Parents’ Bill of Rights Act gives parents the right to decide whether their children should wear face coverings at school.

Calls and emails issued to the offices of the governor and FDOE were not returned.

Janice Falkenstern is an Epoch Times reporter covering the state of Florida.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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