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Duval, Alachua parents file petition to have court order school districts to end mask, quarantine mandates

The plaintiffs filed the petition on an emergency basis with the hopes the court would address it sooner.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Parents in Duval and Alachua counties filed a petition asking the First District Court of Appeals to order both school districts to comply with state COVID-19 rules for schools.

Specifically, the petition mentions the executive order by Gov. Ron DeSantis that requires districts to allow parents to opt their children out of mask mandates. It also mentions the Health Department order requiring districts to allow the parents of children who have been exposed to COVID-19 but do not show symptoms to chose whether their child goes to school or quarantines.  

Attorney Nick Whitney represents the parents in Duval County.

“The Duval County School Board held a sham meeting after the latest [FDOH] rule was issued. At the meeting, not one single parent spoke in favor of the mask mandate.” Whitney said. “But the Board didn’t care; the board members did whatever they wanted to do and refused to give suffering children an opt-out. We have a board of Nurse Ratched clones and Annie Wilkes wannabes; but they’re still subject to the law just like everybody else.”

The parents of the children in Alachua County are represented by Jeff Childers. They accuse the district of "making their own rules" because they did not agree with the state's COVID-19 rules.

“But that’s what the state government is for; Alachua can’t just set up its own shadow government because it doesn’t agree with the state,” Childers said in a press release.

The plaintiffs filed the petition on an emergency basis with the hopes the court would address it sooner.

“If the court agrees and issues an order, and the officials still fail to comply, then they could be subject to criminal contempt proceedings enforced by state law enforcement,“ Whitney said.

You can read the petition in its entirety here.

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