Current CDC guidance for schools recommends that all students, faculty and staff members, and visitors begin the school year wearing masks indoors regardless of vaccination status. Despite that guidance, many suburban school districts have decided to make masks optional. Some experts fear that those districts may be vulnerable to lawsuits, should they have COVID outbreaks that can be traced back to the schools.
Professor Robin Fretwell Wilson, a health law expert, says state law gives school districts immunity from liability for injuries in a number of situations.
"My reading of this is that these guys are going to have a huge zone of authority to set that policy, and if they mess up, I don't see them being held liable for that," said Wilson, director of the university's Institute of Government and Public Affairs.
"A lot of times, if you see a barrier to liability like the immunity rules, you can creatively style your complaint to try to avoid the barrier to liability," Wilson said.
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