The Globe reported on the mother of three students who fought back against the San Juan Unified School District’s face covering policy in May when K-12 students were allowed to return to in-person learning following COVID school lockdowns. She and several other parents shared stories with the Globe of the abuses their kids were being forced to suffer by teachers, administrators and “school safety” cops, with mandatory masking, contact tracing and even regular COVID testing.
This mom called again Monday as her daughter’s high school, Rio Americano High School also in the San Juan Unified School District, suspended her for not wearing a mask in class, despite having a doctor’s medical exemption.
According to the mom, Principal Cliff Kelly at Rio Americano High School in Sacramento first removed her daughter from class at the behest of the teacher, called the mom, then suspended the daughter for not wearing a mask.
The mom said the principal eventually said he and the teacher would allow the daughter back in class without a mask, but the teacher would require the daughter to sit alone in the classroom while she took all of the other students outside for class.
The mom said Principal Kelly even called the sheriff on the mother when she asked him why he ignored the doctor-authorized medical exemption from the mask and face shield, and on what grounds he was suspending her. All of this is recorded on the mom’s phone, including the exchange with a Sheriff’s Deputy.
The mom said Principal Kelly just kept repeating that her daughter was “refusing to comply with a direction, which is a defiance of authority.” The video confirms the principal’s language and the signed medical exemption.
The mom said she asked Principal Kelly several times why he wouldn’t acknowledge her daughter’s medical exemption, but he kept talking in circles about how her daughter defied authority, never acknowledging the medical exemption. She said he told her she could take it up with the school district.
The mom sent an email to the school district about what had happened to her and her daughter at Rio American High School, and immediately received a phone call back from the San Juan Unified School District’s attorney, apologizing and telling her that her daughter was not suspended. The mom said the school district attorney implored her not to pursue the matter against the principal, and to please not tell anyone about what happened and what he did.
“She apologized sincerely and said my daughter is not suspended,” the mom said Monday evening. “The suspension will not be a part of her file. My daughter can go back to school tomorrow and she beseeched me to not take any action against their school principal. She said it wasn’t his fault for suspending my daughter, that he was just following the district policy. She asked me at least twice to please not say anything.”
The attorney did not explain to the mom what the policy was that the principal was following or why the principal ignored the medical exemption.
The attorney told the mom her daughter could return to class Tuesday, and her medical exemption was approved. The mom said the attorney repeated the request to not tell anyone about what happened Monday or about how the principal handled the situation.
The mom sent the Globe an email Tuesday morning with more detail:
“The scare tactics being done on my daughter to get her to comply. My daughter being told her mom is being arrested for doing nothing wrong. My daughter’s principal and secretary manipulated her into thinking she was unsafe to be around others because she has a medical mask exemption. Manipulated and ridiculed for being ‘non-compliant.’ Suspended for being ‘non-compliant.’ Being forced to choose to either go against her doctors’ medical advice or be suspended. Her principal lied to her dad and me and told us my daughter could go back class, however the teacher would remove all of the kids out of the classroom. As soon as we left the principal pulled her from class and put her into a private room to tell her she being suspended. Treating her like a criminal and belittling her. What’s next for my daughter? She must sit in the back of the bus? She can only drink from a certain water fountain? She has to walk on the opposite sidewalk? Last but not least, they treated her like she’s infectious. If the other students are wearing a mask, then they are protected right? So does it matter if my daughter isn’t wearing a mask?”
Tuesday morning, the mom sent photos to the Globe, and said her daughter was being segregated from her peers, forced to sit behind a sheet of plexiglass at a desk by herself in the classroom.
“Tuesday my daughter left class because of the humiliation,” the mom said. “Soon after I contacted the legal department of San Juan Unified School District, an email went out to all of the teachers telling them to take down the shield and put my daughter back in her original spot with her peers.”
“The principal is the one who made the teachers isolate My daughter and use the plexiglass, the mom told the Globe. “He has bullied My daughter non stop. Another teacher isolated my daughter into a room and told her she was being disobedient and being suspended. The school resource officer threatened my daughter hoping to get her to comply. His words verbatim: ‘[Daughter’s Name redacted], if you do not wear a face covering, I am going to suspend you and make a citizen arrest on your mother.’”
Tuesday the mom said her daughter reported her chemistry teacher asked the kid sitting next to her if he felt safe because she didn’t have a mask on.