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TPS school board authorizes lawyers to take legal action over mask mandate ban

Tulsa Public Schools, May 2021 (KTUL photo)
Tulsa Public Schools, May 2021 (KTUL photo)
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Before going into executive session, the board unanimously passed a resolution stating that had it not been for SB 658, TPS would implement a mask mandate.

"That’s absolutely true, we would have a mask mandate and we succeeded with that, had very low cases last year when we were in school and returned to school," said TPS board member Suzanne Schreiber.

And in attendance at the meeting, several parents hoping for a mask mandate this year.

"I would absolutely like to see mask wearing in place," said Jenni Holder.

She has two teens who did distance learning last year and says she'd support a lawsuit against the state over the issue.

"Any kind of litigation is not cheap and I understand, but I think what the Governor did was just ill conceived. I don’t think it was very thoughtful and I would hope that they would move forward with that," she said.

When the board returned from executive session they said they'd authorized attorneys to take action, but that they couldn't specify just exactly what that meant.

"It's not saying that we will or will not, it's just giving them authority to do it," said TPS board member John Croisant.

One legal action we do know about, a lawsuit about to be filed against TPS for not having a mask mandate.

"We do have formal notice of a lawsuit against TPS for not implementing a mask mandate," said Schreiber.

As for TPS filing a lawsuit of it's own against the state...

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"TPS is considering all of its options and its probably most attractive option is that there is other lawsuits filed. We can either join as a party or as an amicus and file a brief supporting that lawsuit. And we’ll decide that when those things evolve," said Schreiber.

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