Parent arrested during protest at Norway-Vulcan Area Schools

 Norway-Vulcan Area Schools sign (WLUC Photo)
Norway-Vulcan Area Schools sign (WLUC Photo) (WLUC)
Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 4:15 PM EDT
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NORWAY, Mich. (WLUC) - Norway Police were called to Norway-Vulcan Area Schools Wednesday morning after a group of parents entered the building and refused to leave.

A parent told TV6 that the group entered the building to demand the school teach their quarantined children with no symptoms and children who refuse to wear a mask.

Police told the group of parents that the school administration requested they leave the premises and if they did not, they would be arrested.

All parents left the building except for 33-year-old Sara Lake who told police she understood the officers and requested to be arrested.

Lake reached out to TV6 and told a reporter that she has been charged with a misdemeanor for trespassing.

Norway-Vulcan Area Schools Superintendent Lou Steigerwald sent the following letter to NVAS families on Wednesday afternoon:

Dear NVAS Family,

I am writing to you this afternoon in regard to an incident that took place on school property this morning.

Shortly before the late bell for school this morning, a group of parents, who are unhappy with the District’s mask policy, entered the middle school despite being told not to enter the building and being directed to leave district property. These directives were ignored. It is standard practice for schools, upon such an occurrence, to contact local law enforcement. This practice was followed.

Our first concern whenever there is a person or persons with unknown intent in our building is for the safety of our students and our staff. Our concern immediately becomes heightened when requests from district administrators are ignored.

The Norway Police did a fine job of arriving quickly on the scene and taking control of the situation. While the protestors did ignore administrative directives, they did not at any time issue any other threats or suggestions toward the safety of students or staff.

As I stated in a previous email to our school community, we respect the right of citizens to disagree with Board decisions and to peacefully protest in a lawful manner.  School buildings and school property, while school is in session especially, are not the place for those protests. Schools must look to the safety of students and staff first and take measures to assure the safety of those persons above all else.

Moving forward for the time being, we will be limiting our building entrances to the main entrances for each building as well as the staffed morning entrance from the playground. These entrances will each be staffed as students enter the building for the school day. This does mean that high school students will need to enter the building through Entrance J, the main high school entrance. Other than the indicated entrances, all other building entrances will be locked.

We apologize for the inconvenience. We are working in coordination with our police department to provide the most secure conduct of school that we can.

Sincerely, Louis Steigerwald, Superintendent, Norway-Vulcan Area Schools

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