Mom Sues Wisconsin School After Son Contracts COVID-19 From Classmate

Photo: (Photo : Stefano Guidi/Getty Images)

A mother filed a lawsuit against the Waukesha School District and its school board after her eldest son contracted COVID-19 from a classmate, and infected his younger siblings. Shannon Jensen filed the injunction asking the school district to comply with the safety protocols issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to prevent virus transmission.

Jensen filed the lawsuit on October 5, which claimed that COVID-19 mitigation measures, such as wearing face masks, weren't being observed among the school children since the school board did away with these protocols in May.

Her children attended the Rose Glen Elementary School and kept wearing a face mask, as instructed by their mother. Jensen alleged her oldest boy sat next to a classmate without a mask and was sick with COVID-19 around September 16 to 17.

Jensen insisted that her son still got infected by the said classmate even as he had a face mask on. Her two other younger boys, who also wore a face mask in school, also tested positive for the virus and caught it from their brother.

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Quarantine at Home

Two days after the incident, Jensen's oldest son exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 and then tested positive for the virus. All of her boys were then quarantined at home, thus missing school and their other activities.

In her statement to the courts, the mother said that the school sent out a delayed notification about the virus spread in her oldest son's class. She learned that four other kids in that class developed COVID-19 symptoms around the same time as her kids. Furthermore, the mother claimed that the school district did not establish quarantine measures and contact tracing despite many cases.

In an email to the press, Superintendent James Sebert said they could not discuss the lawsuit upon their counsel's advice. Eight school board members also would not want to comment in interviews, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Jensen is filing the case with the help of a famous state brewery, Minocqua Brewing Company Super PAC, owned by Kirk Bangstad. Frustrated by the COVID-19 management in the country, Bangstad created the Super PAC, or an "independent expenditure-only political committee," in January 2021 to stand up to the leaders whom he believes are not doing their jobs in government and are downplaying the impact of COVID-19.

Class-Action to Follow?

Meanwhile, Minocqua Brewing Company Super PAC could soon fund a class-action lawsuit against Wisconsin following the death of a student from COVID-19. Fort Atkinson School Board decided to reinstate the face mask policy in mid-September after a 13-year-old student lost his life to the virus.

Mom Danielle Ralston said the face mask rule is a big sigh of relief as her 10-year-old son, who has a rare stomach condition, could be protected while attending in-person classes. However, Ralston said she is also angry and frustrated as the school only acted and established its protocols after a child died.

Jeff Spitzer-Resnick, a civil rights attorney, said he has been in talks with a dozen parents who are thinking about filing a class-action lawsuit. Many of these parents have children with health or disability issues.

Related ArticleGirl Dies of COVID-19 Complications After Teacher Tasked Her to Nurse Sick Classmates

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