3 Vancouver schools placed on lockdown after Proud Boys try to enter during masks protest

Dorothy S. Bass

Vancouver General public Colleges officers verified on Friday that the Skyview Substantial University, Alki Middle College and Chinook Elementary had been put in lockdown right after users of the considerably-correct Happy Boys attempted to gain entry to university grounds, in accordance to witnesses.

Pat Nuzzo, communications director for the district, called the lockdown’s a “safety precaution.”

“This is associated to yesterday’s protest versus Washington state’s necessity for staff members and pupils to put on masks or deal with coverings in universities and on buses,” Nuzzo wrote to OPB.

Patriot Prayer, a much-right team led by Southwest Washington’s Joey Gibson, and other considerably-proper activists produced posts on-line improperly proclaiming that a pupil at the school who did not want to use a mask would deal with arrest if they entered university grounds.

Mothers and fathers of other students at Skyview joined the anti-mask protest, holding signals and calling for the scholar to be provided a medical exemption to mask prerequisites. Close by, academics and students held signals supporting masks.

A person movie posted on the net showed a team of persons exterior the faculty chanting “U-S-A.” Quite a few individuals in the crowd ended up carrying black and yellow garments of the Happy Boys, a much-ideal group ideal identified for their participation in the Jan. 6 insurrection and for inciting violence through protests against anti-fascists.

Protesters yell at passing cars during an anti-mask demonstration in front of Skyview High School on September 3, 2021in Vancouver, Washington.

Protesters yell at passing automobiles through an anti-mask demonstration in entrance of Skyview Superior College on September 3, 2021in Vancouver, Washington.

Jonathan Levinson / OPB

VPS faculty board president Kyle Sproul stated locking down the educational institutions was the suitable final decision to guarantee student safety.

“Regardless of one’s stance on mask mandates, I consider most mothers and fathers in our group agree that protesting at our faculty campuses and disrupting the faculty working day is not in the ideal curiosity of learners,” Sproul told OPB.

The college went on lockdown just after associates of the Proud Boys tried to escort the freshman trying to find the health care exemption into the setting up.

That pupil has been diagnosed with submit-traumatic stress dysfunction and panic, according to her mother, Megan Gabriel. She requested an exemption from the school’s mask mandate because she stated the mask can set off stress assaults.

Gabriel told OPB she was prepared to have her daughter arrive to college early, change classrooms before or after other students, and remain as separate as doable from other pupils to accommodate her daughter’s healthcare problem. Gabriel said the faculty would not exempt her daughter from the mandate.

Gabriel’s daughter has only been to university one particular working day given that classes resumed this 7 days, she mentioned.

“Yesterday, they locked her out of the constructing and I had no idea,” Gabriel explained. “She was locked out of the constructing for an hour.”

The demonstration alone at instances turned vitriolic. Stability guards at the school claimed some of the protesting girls referred to as woman students derogatory names.

But Gabriel explained she isn’t ant-mask or anti-vaccine. Her son wears a mask at school, she reported, and she wears her mask when indoors.

Nuzzo explained she couldn’t discuss certain students due to confidentiality regulations but stated Vancouver Public Educational institutions is expected to abide by point out health and fitness and protection steps, which include mask mandates.

“Some college students qualify for a professional medical or disability mask accommodation,” Nuzzo mentioned. “To supply lodging, we get the job done through a method with the student’s family to contemplate all necessary information and facts together with documentation from the overall health supplier.”

She did not say why Gabriel’s asked for exemption was denied. Nuzzo claimed lodging are offered for mental health and fitness desires, and that Vancouver supplies a thoroughly distant discovering option.

Just one college student told OPB that academics and college at the schools guarded doors inside the constructing in the course of the lockdown, while safety guards resolved the Happy Boys.

“All the learning receives disrupted. We have to sit down quietly, not make sound, and we were being hunkered down in our school rooms for close to an hour to an hour-and-a-fifty percent,” reported Lucas, a 16-calendar year-aged significant university college student at Skyview. OPB is withholding Lucas’ final identify to secure his identification.

He in contrast the lockdown to university shooter drills. Lucas also claimed some learners were being harassed by the anti-mask demonstrators outside the house the college developing.

“They’ve gotten quite wild out in this article not long ago. It’s sort of insane,” Lucas claimed.

Lucas and other learners handed out masks at the university as a counterdemonstration to the far-suitable activists.

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