Fort Worth ISD Board Calls Special Meeting Over Masks; Parents Hold Mock Funeral

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The Fort Worth ISD board has called for a special meeting on Tuesday to discuss masks in schools.

The agenda posted on the district's website states the school board will allow public comments before going into closed session to seek advice from attorneys. Following the executive session, action is expected to be taken on the mask issue.

Some Fort Worth ISD parents have been calling on the district's board of trustees to step in and reinstate a mask mandate after a judge blocked the district from enforcing masks.

On Saturday, a group of parents held a mock funeral procession and memorial near Eastern Hills High School.

Car windows were painted with the words "No masks, no school," and "Protect our children."

Organizers said they wanted to send a strong message: the district can choose masks now or memorials later.

"With the spread of the delta variant, parents and education advocates and people who work within the district are very concerned about the spread of COVID once school opens without a mask mandate," parent Alexander Montalvo said.

Montalvo said Saturday that he and fellow parents want school board President Tobi Jackson to call an emergency meeting to vote on the mask mandate.

In a hearing Friday, 114st District Court Judge John Chupp suggested Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Kent Scribner did not have the authority, without the vote of the school board, to issue a mask mandate for the district.

Parents cited the lack of pediatric ICU beds in North Texas as one reason the school board should vote on the mask mandate and said the district should provide a virtual option for students most vulnerable to COVID-19.

Fort Worth ISD goes back to school Monday.

In a statement issued Friday, the district said it would abide by the judge's ruling, but "strongly recommends" staff, students and visitors wear a mask on campus.

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