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Face masks as part of Paris ISD dress code suspended after court ruling – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth




A North Texas school district cannot require students to wear face masks as part of its dress code, a Lamar County District Judge said.

Justice R. Wesley Tidwell granted temporary injunction to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, which sued Paris ISD after the board of directors voted 5 to 1 last month to add face coverings to the neighborhood dress code in a bid to slow the spread of COVID-19.

“Defendants do not have the authority to issue or enforce a face mask warrant in light of Governor Abbott’s Executive Order GA-38,” Tidwell wrote in the order.

He went on to write that the temporary restraining order was necessary to “prevent irreparable harm from the continued violation of state law in the absence of an injunction.”

Lamar County, where Paris is located, had around 854 active cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Texas coronavirus case

The locations on the map are approximate county locations and are not intended to identify where infected people live.

Case data was pulled from a variety of sources, including County Health Services and the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Paris ISD COVID-19 Dashboard said the district has 35 active cases – eight staff and 27 students.

“The governor of Texas does not have the power to usurp the exclusive power and duty of the board of directors to govern and oversee the management of the district’s public schools,” the district said in a statement last month.

According to Abbott’s order, school districts cannot require students or staff to wear a mask despite the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. School systems must, however, allow individuals to wear a mask if they choose to do so.

Paxton has sued six other school districts, including Richardson ISD, which defied the Governor’s Order in Council and instituted a face mask policy.

A hearing for the state’s interim injunction request in the Paris ISD case is scheduled for September 21 at 9 a.m.




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