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The family of a disabled child in Texas who has filed a lawsuit against Greg Abbott’s school ban on masking obligations is now around the corner from the federal government.
On Wednesday, the US Department of Justice issued a formal statement in support of a federal proceeding filed in August by advocacy group Disability Rights Texas. In a statement, federal lawyers banned public schools from requesting masks from students, barring children with disabilities from accessing lessons directly during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Claims.
A statement explains that this summer’s executive order banning mask obligations “has the effect of denying them an equal opportunity to participate in and take advantage of the face-to-face instruction provided by public schools.” There is.
The governor’s order violates the Americans with Disabilities Act, known as the ADA, because federal agencies must provide all available options to all students, regardless of whether the school district offers virtual learning options. claims to be. The pandemic doesn’t allow officials to ignore the ADA. In any case, the state needs to be more sensitive to public health needs, the ministry said.
The department said that all orders have been changed to comply with the ADA.
In late August, the advocacy group Disability Rights Texas filed a federal proceeding on behalf of several families in Texas against Abbott, Attorney General Ken Paxton, and Texas Education Commissioner Mike Moraes.
Dustin Linders, who oversees Texas disability rights attorneys, said in a statement that he was glad the federal government was gathering behind his proceedings.
“Just as banning slopes at school entrances is a form of discrimination, banning masking requirements discriminates against those who are required to wear masks to attend school. You can do that,” Linders says.
The group claims that the governor’s order and TEA enforcement have denied access to public education because children with disabilities are at increased risk of viral illness and death.
As a result, Texas violates Section 504 of the ADA and Rehabilitation Act, states the Disability Rights Texas Proceedings. The law prohibits organizations and employers from excluding or denying individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to receive program benefits and services. The hearing will take place on Wednesday before US District Court Judge Lee Jackel in Austin.
The TEA was far from implementing the governor’s orders, as proceedings ran across the state and courts back and forth in decisions. However, on September 17, officials quietly updated the guidance, stating that the school district could not demand face covers because the court did not block Abbott’s executive order banning local mask obligations.
The TEA’s latest guidance adds to the ongoing war on coronavirus prevention, and school officials and parents are mulling over whether or not there are requirements.
However, as the new school year drew to a close, some local officials opposed Abbott’s ban to protect teachers and schoolchildren due to coronavirus infections and hospitalizations. The coronavirus vaccine has not yet been approved for children under the age of 12.
And nearly two months after the school year, schools in Texas report more cases of the coronavirus in two months than in the entire 2020-21 school year.
While TEA was sued in federal court, the U.S. Department of Education’s Department of Civil Rights gave guidance on banning mask obligations in schools: “students with disabilities in state school districts.”
The federal civil rights agency has launched similar investigations in Iowa, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee and Utah. The TEA did not do so in Texas because it had not previously implemented the governor’s orders while proceedings were ongoing.
In a letter to the TEA commissioner, federal officials will prevent disabled students at high risk of serious illness from COVID-19 from safely returning to face-to-face education that would be in violation of federal law. He said he would focus somehow. , written by Susan B. Goldberg, Deputy Secretary of Civil Rights.
Goldberg said he was concerned that Texas’ mask policy did not allow for “equitable educational opportunity for students with disabilities who are at high risk of serious illness due to COVID-19.”
The Justice Department claims that Texas school’s ban on compulsory wearing of masks violates the rights of students with disabilities.
Source link The Justice Department claims Texas school’s ban on masking obligations violates rights of students with disabilities.