Kane County parents concerned over school district mask exemptions

Local News

KANAB, Utah (ABC4) – Some parents with kids in the Kane County School District tell ABC4 they have concerns after the district provided forms to parents to opt-out of masks in school with an exemption.

Breanna Crofts says her kids go to Valley Elementary in Orderville. She says on Monday they showed up to school without masks. Under the state public health order, all individuals on school property have to wear masks until June 15th, unless one of the exemptions in the order is met.

“We got a message saying that the kids either put masks on or they would be removed from the building,” says Crofts.

She says the next day, her kids showed up to the school again without masks, and the school leaders wouldn’t let them inside.

“ I said ‘Okay, me and my children will sit outside and you will give them their school work.’ So 8 in the morning, and it was cold that day, my kids sat outside on the lawn and did their school work,” says Crofts.

Tuesday night, the Kane County school board met and made a decision to provide an exemption form to all parents. It states possible exemptions are if the student has a medical or mental health condition and/or an intellectual or developmental disability that prevents them from wearing a facemask.

“The leeway they have is to not require proof from a medical professional, they can rely on the certification of the parent,” says Robert Van Dyke, the Kane County Attorney.

Van Dyke, says this is great for parents who have children who fall under the exemption.

“For the group out there who simply doesn’t want to comply wit the mask mandate, this invites them to be unethical,” says Van Dkye.

Crofts says she put down for the exemption that her son has a speech impediment and her daughter has temporary episodes due to the pandemic and difficulty learning with a mask.

“I hope that many other districts’ schools boards will stand up and let parents decide if they want their kids to wear a mask or not,” says Van Dyke.

“Please don’t use your kids as a political football,” says Van Dyke.

Kane County School officials have not yet responded to ABC4’s requests for a comment.

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