FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 25, 2022
CONTACT: Tracey Miller, 202-660-1628, Tracey.Miller@theacru.org
Media Availability: Lori Roman, President, ACRU
Loudoun County School District Defies State Law
Students Following State Law Placed in Solitary Confinement
Naples, FL — On the heels of a Virginia Governor Youngkin’s Executive Order Number Two (2022), the Loudoun County School District continues to defy state law by disciplining students choosing to refuse an illegal, school-imposed mask mandate.
As detailed in an ACRU letter to Superintendent Ziegler and Members of the Loudoun County School Board, “Willard Middle School student Isabella Koons arrived at school yesterday without a mask per her parents’ wishes and directives. Her teacher directed her to put on a mask. She politely declined, explaining to the teacher that her parents told her she is no longer required to wear a mask pursuant to state law and that wearing a mask conflicts with her family’s beliefs concerning health and their Christian faith.”
As demonstrated by this latest action by the Loudoun County School District, Crisis Tyrants at local, state and federal levels have shockingly escalated the argument that school administrators and teachers, not parents, have the authority to decide what’s best for children.
Isabella’s situation only worsened as the event escalated outside of the classroom.
“The eighth-grader was then promptly ejected from class and sent to the Dean’s Office. The Dean, who is the school administrator tasked with student discipline, sternly and authoritatively directed 13-year-old Isabella to put on a mask. Isabella reiterated her position and again declined to put on a mask. Dean DeStefano then placed a call to Isabella’s father. Mr. Koons affirmed his daughter’s refusal to wear a mask, citing the Governor’s Executive Order that clearly places such a decision in the hands of parents, not school administrators. Dean DeStefano told Mr. Koons that Isabella would not be allowed to return to class unless and until she put on a mask, and directed Mr. Koons to pick Isabella up from school. Mr. Koons refused, insisting that the school could not punish Isabella nor deprive her of an education for her parents exercising their lawful right to decide whether or not to mask their child. The school proceeded to place Isabella in solitary confinement for the remainder of the school day.”
ACRU’s President Lori Roman likens the situation to disciplinary action. “To be clear, isolating the child in an enclosed office with nothing but a laptop is not the equivalent of providing an in-person education. Ms. Koons has no access to teachers, books, lessons, assignments, instructional materials, classroom dialogue, or anything that resembles a meaningful education. In effect, Ms. Koons and other students in the district who are following their parents’ directives not to wear face coverings are being held in in-school suspension.”
Regarding the issue of school-imposed mask mandates, Governor Youngkin’s Executive Order could not be more precise. According to Section 2, “The parents of any child enrolled in an elementary or secondary school or a school-based early childcare and educational program may elect for their children not to be subject to any mask mandate in effect at the child’s school or educational program.”
ACRU intends to follow this case closely, taking any and all action required to oppose the flagrant violation of state law by the Loudoun County School Board. When school administrators shove parents aside to implement drastic and unconstitutional agendas, the ACRU stands ready to fight for our constitutional rights.
American Constitutional Rights Union, is a non-partisan, non-profit public policy organization dedicated to defending the constitutionally protected civil rights of all Americans.