Shelby County Leaders Respond to Gov. Lee’s Executive Order – FOX13 News Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Whether students should wear masks in schools has been at the center of controversy for weeks.

This controversy continues a day after Gov. Bill Lee signed an executive order giving parents in Tennessee the ability to remove their children from mask warrants.

Some Shelby County officials are angry. On the flip side, some state lawmakers say it’s the parents’ choice.

Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dr Joris Ray tweeted Monday evening that district leaders are meeting with legal counsel to review Governor Lee’s executive order that allows parents to remove their children from mask warrants like SCS’s .

Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer expects the issue to end in court.

“I think Shelby County schools made a courageous choice but also what could be considered a dangerous choice,” Sawyer said. “This will require litigation. It’s going to force them to fight it, and not all districts have this workforce.

FOX13 called State Senator Brian Kelsey to find out why he thinks the executive order is fair. He did not return our call.

Kelsey released a statement Monday saying he is grateful for the relief the governor has provided to the children. He went on to say that every child’s situation is different.

Black Caucus members have repeatedly said that politics gets in the way of what is best for children.

“I think parents have rights, as President Brooks said, have rights, but they don’t have the right to endanger the lives of other children and other households,” said Shelby County Commissioner Van Turner. “If so, why don’t we allow our children to smoke? I mean, you say you don’t smoke in schools.

It is still unclear exactly what the consequences would be for schools that continue to apply the mandate. Governor Lee said, “We would see what happens there.”

There are still questions as to whether this applies to private schools. After all, the Shelby County Health Department included private schools when it implemented a mask warrant for schools earlier this month.

FOX13 has contacted the governor’s office to find out. We will keep you posted as soon as we hear from them.


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