Several parents file lawsuit against Olathe, Blue Valley school districts challenging mask mandates

Posted at 2:46 PM, May 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-05 15:46:28-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Several parents whose children attend the Olathe and Blue Valley school districts have filed a lawsuit over the districts' mask mandates.

In April, both Olathe and Blue Valley school districts voted to keep mask mandates in place.

The decision of the districts came after parents in both school districts previously challenged the mandates. They were able to do so under Senate Bill 40 which was passed into law in March.

The law allows parents to challenge the COVID-19 safety protocols in any Kansas school district. The districts are required to hold a hearing every time a parent raises a concern about the districts protocols.

If a district refuses to eliminate or change its protocols parents are allowed to file a civil lawsuit in court to try to change the protocols.

The parents filed a similar lawsuit on Monday in Johnson County District Court.

At several points in the more than 1,200-page lawsuit, parents argued that the districts were unfair in providing them with a sufficient hearing to state their case against the mask mandates.

"Matthew Couch's SB 40 grievences were heard by Zoom conference on May 3, 2021. Couch was not provided a SB40 hearing conducted by a quorum of the Blue Valley School Board," the lawsuit said.

All of the parents also argued that the districts denied their grievances.

A hearing on the lawsuit is set for 2:30 p.m., on Thursday, May 6.