April 28, 2021
On Tuesday, the Vail School District in southern Arizona was scheduled to discuss its mask policy after Gov. Doug Ducey enacted a new executive order that lifted the state’s order to require face masks in schools.
In response to the meeting, more than a hundred parents rallied for the Vail School District to drop the mask mandate.
But just moments before the meeting was scheduled to take place, school officials abruptly decided to cancel the meeting, citing safety concerns over the parents’ protest.
A sheriff's deputy says the meeting has been canceled. Upset parents want to know why. There are dozens gathered at the door… others in the parking lot. pic.twitter.com/MjjEIAWvKT— Eric Fink (@EricMillerFink) April 28, 2021
A throng of parents later pushed their way into the board room while refusing to wear masks and demanded to speak with their elected officials.
In response, the Vail board called 911, and Pima County Sheriff Nanos told KGUN 9, a sergeant and four deputies showed up in just over a minute.
The district said the sheriff told the board to adjourn the study session because the crowd was uncontrollable.
But the Sheriff says that’s false, the board made that decision on their own, and crowd control was not an issue.
Emotions quite high.. Parents demanding answers from the sheriff's deputy as to why the school board left. The deputy trying to explain the meeting is canceled for tonight. @KVOA pic.twitter.com/nutYVKkShM— Eric Fink (@EricMillerFink) April 28, 2021
Emotions ran high as parents confronted law enforcement, demanding to know why the board canceled the meeting. “They [school board] have the audacity to leave when we come here as peaceful parents to talk to them,” one parent passionately asked.
Following the adjournment, the parents, under Robert’s Rules of Order, voted in a new school board. Then, the new members voted to end the mask requirement in Vail Schools. Whether this procedure to install new board members is legally valid remains in contention.
Quite a night here in Vail. Some parents voted in the hallway to elect a new school board. This has no merit as school board members must be elected in an actual election. I’ll have the latest from a wild night coming up at 10. @KVOA pic.twitter.com/5D6qUXWAi7— Eric Fink (@EricMillerFink) April 28, 2021
But a Facebook account posted video of the meeting with this summary explaining the parents’ position:
“Vail School Board violates Arizona open meeting law, refuse to hear from the people, and goes home. So, the People hold quorum, call their own meeting to order, elect a new School Board, and immediately vote to CANCEL the mask mandate – along with voting to disallow any medical procedure being forced on the children or employees. This is how you take back power from a tyrannical government.
Great work to the parents of the students in Vail School District.”
Watch the video of the parents voting to replace the board: