Teutopolis Schools TRO Vacated by Judge


Published on October 13 2021 4:24 pm
Last Updated on October 13 2021 4:38 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

No Masks Cowden

Circuit Judge Douglas Jarman, who issued a Temporary Restraining Order in September allowing some Teutopolis school district students to attend school without wearing masks, on Wednesday vacated the TRO.

A hearing on whether to issue a preliminary injunction in the matter that had been scheduled for Thursday, has been vacated. 

As to what happened, Judge Jarman wrote in his filing on Judici.com that he is unavailable Thursday. As a result, a telephone conference call was held Wednesday involving the judge, Thomas DeVore who represents the parents involved, and Luke Feeney, attorney for the Teutopolis school district. At the conclusion of the conference call, Judge Jarman vacated the TRO. The judge also wrote that his decision is based on the 5th District Appellate Court's recent ruling on a similar case involving the Bond County school district in Greenville. The appellate court ruled that since Governor J.B. Pritzker, who imposed the mask mandate, is not named in the local lawsuit, the circuit court ruling in Bond County was void. Judge Jarman used that same appellate ruling to void the TRO in the Teutopolis district case.

Teutopolis Superintendent Matt Sturgeon said the district had no advance notice that Thursday's hearing was vacated and of the Wednesday conference call. Sturgeon said he is notifying district staff of the situation and is still determining how to handle the mask situation for the affected students in advance of school on Thursday.

Also Wednesday, Judge Jarman gave DeVore permission to file an amended pleading in the TRO matter. A status hearing in the matter is now scheduled for the morning of October 28.