Youngkin seeks to 'intervene' in lawsuit against Loudoun County, VA for refusing to axe mask mandate

Youngkin says he's 'disappointed' Loudoun County schools are suspending students for not wearing masks

Updated: February 3, 2022 - 8:26pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin has filed an "intervention request" in a lawsuit against Loudoun County's school board to enforce his executive order that prohibits mask mandates in schools, and defended students who decide not to wear face coverings in class. 

The Republican governor said he's "disappointed" that students are being suspended in Loudoun County schools for not wearing masks, adding that "history will not look fondly" upon the administrators' actions.

Up to this point, Loudoun County's school board has vowed not to rescind its mask mandate, despite Youngkin's executive order.

Parents are suing Loudoun County to challenge the board's decision. Youngkin and Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares are seeking to join the parents' challenge. 

"The Commonwealth of Virginia seeks to intervene.  The intervention request was brought by Gov., AG and Superintendent of Public Instruction," said a spokesperson for the governor.

The full request to intervene in the lawsuit can be read here.

Youngkin was asked for his response to Loudoun schools suspending 29 students for refusing to wear masks.

"I'm very disappointed in that and as I have very clearly articulated, parents should have, and based on my executive order, do have, the right to decide whether their child wears a mask or not. This is about their child's health," he said on Thursday. 

"And this is about who is best positioned to make a decision with regards to their child's health. And that's why I feel that these school boards; history will not look fondly upon them for taking these decisions to tell children who want to be in school that they can't be in school," he added. 

Youngkin said having children in the classroom is "so important" at this time.

"What we're also seeing is the scientific and medical community revisiting these old assumptions that masking children in the classroom is, in fact, correct or not. And so, I think the scientific and medical community is revisiting this," he said.

"I think that these students should be allowed in the classroom. I'm disappointed that they're not. And I'm just so proud of parents that are standing up to protect their children's rights, like parents in Loudoun County right now. This will hopefully be resolved shortly. I'm optimistic at what's happening in our court system. And we'll just wait and see," he added.