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Parent attacks teacher over school mask mandate

The Hill logo The Hill 8/14/2021 Rachel Scully
a small child sitting on a table: Parent attacks teacher over school mask mandate © Getty Images Parent attacks teacher over school mask mandate

A parent allegedly attacked a teacher Friday at a California elementary school over a dispute about wearing masks on the first day, NBC reported.

The incident occurred at Sutter Creek Elementary School in Amador County, Calif., when the parent saw his daughter coming out of the building with a face covering and grew frustrated over the school's mask mandate. The parent reportedly engaged in a verbal altercation with the school principal when a male teacher intervened, causing the situation to escalate.

The alleged physical fight left the teacher bleeding, according to NBC.

"As the first day of school comes and goes, there are always hiccups along the way, especially during this trying time," Amador County Unified School District Superintendent Torie Gibson wrote in a letter to families.


Video: Parents protest school mask mandate shouting ‘will not comply’ at board members (NBC News)

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"Unfortunately, a parent took it upon himself to verbally assault a principal that led to a serious physical altercation between him and a teacher as the teacher intended to protect the principal," Gibson added.

The teacher suffered "lacerations on his face, some bruising on his a face and a pretty good knot on the back of his head," according to NBC affiliate KCRA of Sacramento.

Gibson said that "assaulting a staff member will never be tolerated on any school campus" and noted that the mask requirements are constantly changing.

"We are not the ones making the rules/mandates," she wrote in the letter. "We are the ones required to follow/enforce them if we want to keep our doors open and students at school five days a week."

The situation reflects the nationwide debate over mask mandates in schools, which President Biden says should not be politicized.

"I know there are a lot of people out there trying to turn a public safety measure - that is, children wearing masks in school so they can be safe - into a political dispute. But this isn't about politics," Biden said Thursday. "This is about keeping our children safe."

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