Update on the Fight Against COVID Mask Order from Colorado Christian Schools
For most of this week, the Jefferson County Courthouse has been the scene of a very 2021 type of fight – a piece between Jefferson County Public Health and three Christian schools on the COVID-19 mask rules.
But yesterday, two-thirds of a resolution was achieved. JCPH settled with two institutions, Augustine Classical Academy and Beth Eden Baptist School, while an injunction was granted against the third, Faith Christian Academy.
JCPH’s verified injunction complaint against schools was filed on September 15. She points out that “the Jefferson County District Attorney is authorized to take any civil action requested by a county public health director” to reduce a condition that exists in violation of, or to restrict or prohibit any action that is in violation. to, or prosecute for the violation or enforcement of public health laws and the standards, ordinances and rules of the state council or a county or district public health council. ‘”
The document then describes the complaints against the three schools and their different levels of cooperation, or lack thereof, with the inspectors. On August 31, for example, JCPH staff issued a first notice of violation against Beth Eden after seeing “three classes of 30 to 40 students without masks, three teachers without masks and three administrators without masks.”
The next day, September 1, members of the health department attempted to inspect the Augustine Classical Academy, but were refused entry because “the school requires scheduled appointments.” An inspector returned on September 7 and slipped into the nursery school after being ordered to wait outside; only two of the ten children inside were masked. Later, the inspector was allowed to look through the windows of the main building classrooms, where around 15 children without face coverings were spotted.
And the Christian faith? The school was cited for violating face covering requirements on August 26. Then, on August 30, investigators were only allowed entry into a single classroom, where half of the students did not have masks – and on September 8, according to JCPH, administrators refused to allow a follow-up. -up visit.
The deal with Beth Eden and Augustine Classical Academy calls on schools to require indoor masks for students and teachers and to allow inspectors access to ensure these decrees are enforced. The injunction against Faith Christian Academy should have roughly the same effect.
Jefferson County Declaration about the resolution reads: “JCPH is very pleased that the judge has recognized the need to wear a mask in schools to protect young children who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 due to their inability to do so. immunize, which ultimately protects in-person learning. Our priority is to mitigate COVID-19 in the community, and wearing a mask is the best way to protect young children from COVID-19 so that they do not contract the virus themselves or pass it on. to others. ”