FARRAGUT, Tenn. (WATE) — A student walk-out and parent protest over masks in schools was staged near the Farragut campuses Friday morning. Currently, Knox County Schools is under a reinstated mask mandate due to an injunction issued by a federal judge in September 2021 after Knox County parents of students with disabilities filed a lawsuit.

The protesters gathered along West End Avenue near the entrance to Farragut school campuses holding signs that read messages such as, “Unmask our kids” and “Stop forcing children to wear your fear.” They stood beneath umbrellas and many were wearing rain gear due to the weather conditions.

Organizers said ahead of the Friday walk-out protesting masks in schools that they were not going to be there to intimidate anyone.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday is expected to loosen its federal mask-wearing guidelines against COVID-19 as well as a change to its metrics used to determine recommendations. However, Knox County Schools remains under a mask mandate due to the September injunction. This week, the Knox County Commission voted to allow the Knox County law director to hire outside legal counsel to help in the lawsuit.

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