(PresidentialInsider.com)- Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is not going to stop fighting to ensure that no school district in his state imposes a mask mandate.
This week, DeSantis said he would withhold pay from any school board members or superintendents who decide they won’t comply with his executive order that bans mask mandates in schools in the state.
In response, Florida’s Department of Education will investigate Broward County Schools after they said they would refuse to abide by DeSantis’ order. The Department of Education sent a letter to Vickie Cartwright, the district’s interim superintendent, and Dr. Rosalind Osgood, the school board chair of Broward County.
The letter expressed their “grave concern” over the response of the school board to DeSantis’ order that is banning school districts from implementing a mask requirement for students, staff and visitors.
The letter reminded the two that Florida has stated that all parents have a right to opt their students out of recommendations ore requirements that are made by school boards or schools themselves. This is established by Florida state law.
Richard Corcoran, the commissioner of education in Florida, wrote in the letter:
“This letter is sent to express my brave concern regarding your district’s significant neglect in response to the recently adopted emergency rule 64DER21-12 from the Florida Department of Health (FDOH). The order, issued on August 6, 201, by the Florida Surgeon General, Dr. Scott Rivkees, is explicit in its expectations for ensuring that any mandated mask policies imposed by a district or school ‘must allow for parent or legal guardian of the student to opt-out the student from wearing a face covering or mask.’
“The emergency rule does not require parents to submit medical documentation from a physician or a nurse practitioner in order to opt-out.
“Because the rule invokes the Parents’ Bill of Rights, it does not contemplate or allow school districts to limit those rights by adding additional requirements in order to opt-out and any such requirement is inconsistent with the emergency rule. The action taken today by the Broward County School Board meeting makes it clear that you have no current intentions of complying with this order, which is intended to guarantee school choice options to parents/guardians regarding their child while also protecting families and students federal and state-protected rights to privacy.”
In his letter, Rivkees also warned the two school officials that depending on whatever facts in the investigation come to light, he may recommend to the state’s Board of Education that they withhold the salaries of school board members and/or superintendents who defy the governor’s orders.
His letter continued:
“There is no room for error or leniency when it comes to ensuring compliance with policies that allow parents and guardians to make health and educational choices for their children … If this matter is not addressed by submitting the documentation establishing compliance with the law, the maximum accountability measures provided for under the law will be imposed.”