California announced its plan to drop the state’s mask mandate for childcare centers and schools just a few weeks after agents from the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) entered preschools to interview young children about their schools’ mask policies, according to documents obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The CDSS said the interviews were held for the children’s safety as part of its effort to enforce masking regulations in a letter to parents obtained by DCNF. The interviews were conducted “with staff present or within line of sight of staff,” according to the CDSS.
The “investigation” of the schools was the result of a complaint about a lack of enforcement of state masking requirements, said Kevin Gaines, the CDSS’ deputy director of child care licensing.
California requires children in K-12 schools and childcare centers to wear masks, but it will drop that requirement on March 11. Aspen Leaf Preschool resisted the mandate by not requiring children to wear masks at its campuses, according to an August 2021 document explaining its COVID-19 policies.
Children cannot be required to wear masks during nap time or meal time which makes up three hours of each day, according to the document, leading school leaders to reason that wearing masks for the rest of the day would not prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Parents said state regulators simultaneously “raided” all three branches of the San Diego-based preschool to interview children as young as one year old about the schools’ masking policies, according to the Voice of San Diego.
“This gross abuse of power is shameful and unacceptable for many reasons,” two Aspen Leaf Preschool parents said, according to Voice of San Diego. “The people who ordered this to be done and those who participated should be held responsible.”
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