TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Shawnee Heights USD 450 Board of Education voted 6-1 Monday to approve the district’s back-to-school plan, which will require masks indoors for everyone in the district to start the school year.

Masks will also be required on school transportation, per federal requirements, but won’t be required outdoors. The back-to-school plan also said students will be learning in-person full-time.

Tensions were high during the public comment portion of the board meeting. One parent even had to be escorted out after she refused to sit down after her allotted three minutes. The school board brought in local doctors and health officials to talk about the current conditions of COVID-19 in our area, so parents who spoke at the meeting felt like they were ambushed.

But ultimately, the school board chose to follow local data and recommendations. The board will re-evaluate the plan on October 18. You can watch Monday’s board meeting here. To see the district’s COVID-19 mitigation information, click here. As of 10 p.m. Monday, the plan wasn’t yet updated to reflect the board’s decision to implement the mask requirement.