MNPS students still required to wear masks

Dr. Adrienne Battle

Students in Nashville will still be required to wear masks, despite the recently signed law prohibiting mask requirements in public schools.

Lawyers representing students with disabilities sued the state, alleging that the new law violates the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Judge Waverly D. Crenshaw, Jr. has ordered that all parties “maintain the status quo” while the lawsuit is pending.

Dr. Adrienne Battle, director of schools, issued the following statement on the continuation of mask policies at MNPS:

“Masks will continue to be required for students and staff in Metro Schools.

“As you may be aware, Gov. Bill Lee signed into law recently passed legislation that prohibits mask requirements in schools.

“On Friday, lawyers representing students with disabilities filed a lawsuit seeking to block this new law from taking effect because it would potentially violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

“Today, the United States District Court of Middle Tennessee issued an order requiring that the status quo be maintained. For MNPS that means masks will continue to be required until further notice from the court.

“Our strong desire is to get to a point where masks are no longer necessary, and our classroom environment looks like it did back before the start of the pandemic. Unfortunately, there is still COVID transmission throughout our community, and we are still seeing dozens of cases a week of students testing positive for the virus. Additionally, the CDC still recommends that K-12 schools adopt universal masking rules to reduce transmission in buildings and while students ages 5-11 have begun receiving their COVID-19 vaccine if their parents want them to, it takes five weeks from the first dose for a person to be considered fully vaccinated.

“We would ask for your patience and understanding of the school staff tasked with enforcing these mask requirements until these legal issues can be resolved.”

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