Loudoun County Schools Respond After Students Refuse to Wear Masks

group of students walking into school


After a large group of students at Woodgrove High School, part of Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS), decided to defy the school’s mask mandate Monday, LCPS has responded.

“This morning 30 Woodgrove students (out of a student body of 1,585) refused to wear a mask. They were asked to move to the auditorium where they could use the Schoology platform to continue their studies,” Wayde B. Byard, LCPS’ Public Information Officer, told The Virginia Star by email. “Teachers dropped periodically in to help students with their work. A lunch period and bathroom breaks were arranged. Several students opted to go home and were allowed to do so.”

The American Principles Project posted the video, which was making the rounds on social media Monday morning.

LCPS said it reminded parents about the school’s mask mandate Sunday night. According to Byard, it said the following:

Students who are not wearing a mask will be asked to wear one. If they do not have a mask, one will be provided to them. If a student refuses to wear a mask, staff will meet with the student and contact their parent/guardian to discuss and identify the reason the student will not comply. If non-compliance is related to a medical or financial need, the school-based team will develop a plan of action to support the student in following the requirement.

Woodgrove High School did not return a comment request.

LCPS is among a group of several large school districts who have decided to defy newly-inaugurated Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s (R) mask mandate policy. Youngkin band mask mandates in public schools on his first day in office.

The students walked out on the same day that seven other school districts including Fairfax County, Prince William County, Alexandria, Arlington, Richmond, Falls Church and Hampton sued Youngkin over the ban.

“We are disappointed that these school boards are ignoring parents’ rights. The governor and attorney general are in coordination and are committed to aggressively defending parents’ fundamental right to make decisions with regard to their child’s upbringing, education, and care, as the legal process plays out,” a Youngkin spokesperson reportedly said in response to the lawsuit.

Republican Attorney General Jason Miyares’ office also jumped into the battle, saying that his office stood behind Youngkin’s decision to ban mask mandates.

“An unfortunate side effect of the COVID-19 emergency has been the irreversible harm to our children’s mental health and experience in the classroom. The Attorney General stands by the Governor’s executive order. The General Assembly has given him the power to take appropriate steps to confront this emergency and his determination that parents should make decisions regarding the health, wellbeing, and safety of their children was an appropriate use of that power. As we wait for the Supreme Court’s guidance, the Attorney General’s office urges parents to listen to their principals. We have faith in the legal process and will not be commenting further on the pending litigation at this time.”

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Pete D’Abrosca is a contributor at The Virginia Star and The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “walking to school” by American Principles.

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