See a school principal call police to escort a 4-year-old off school campus for not following the Theuerkauf Elementary schools mask policy.
The Theuerkauf Elementary School in the Mountain View Whisman School District (MVWSD) of California is making national news for a controversial encounter caught on camera. The situation involves the district’s mask-mandating policy, in which the school’s principal is seen calling authorities to remove a 4-year-old for not wearing his mask. Drawing stiff ire, the situation calls attention to the continuing debate over masking protocols in schools. See the video below.
The little boy, who is being escorted to school by his father who documents the entire incident on his phone, is met by the school’s principal at his classroom entrance. The Theuerkauf elementary principal apologizes to the father but asserts that he can not go in without a mask. She conveys that the school wants him here, but because of district policy, all students must wear a mask inside.
Cutting out multiple times, the video starts again at a later point in time, in which the father stands outside the classroom and records the 4-year-old being removed from the classroom by the Theuerkauf Elementary principal. Discussing the circumstances again with the father, she tells him that she enjoys the boy’s presence, and how much she wants to support him. However, she tells him that she is here to “serve all students” reminding him again that district policy has not changed. “I can not keep spending time on this same issue,” she adds, insinuating that this isn’t the first encounter she has had with the family.
At this point, the camera cuts out and back again, to find the boy and his father remaining outside Theuerkauf Elementary. The principal tells the father that if they do not leave campus, she will have to call the police to escort the boy away. An officer shows up on the scene and attempts to deescalate the situation. Saying that he can’t take sides, he assures the father that he has valid points, but reminds him that they all have to follow district policy.
The district policy allows schools like Theuerkauf Elementary to remain mask optional unless community transmission levels reach red alert or high rates of transmission. At that time, the district was in the red zone. Since the video was shared, the area has been downgraded to yellow, or medium rate of transmission, making masking optional once again.
According to the New York Post, 50 students and 12 staff members at Theuerkauf Elementary had tested positive in the first five days of classes. The father, identifying only as Shawn, discussed the recording in an interview with ABC7 News. He said that his son refused to wear masks because of developmental issues. He told the news outlet that he made the video to share his experience with other parents. He stated that his son is constantly turned away from school with tears in his eyes, unable to fathom the entire situation.
Many parents across the nation vehemently oppose schools mandating that children must mask up in the classroom. The CDC recently relaxed its guidelines to recommend that masking is optional when schools are not seeing high rates of transmission. But given extensive data available online depicting information that shows how little COVID tends to affect children, many parents, like the father of the Theuerkauf Elementary student, don’t want to see schools enforce any sort of masking policies whatsoever.