BELOIT, Wis. (WTVO) — The School District of Beloit cancelled school in all of its buildings Friday due to a planned protest which “may be disruptive to the school day.”
The decision was announced by the district Friday morning after collaborating with the Beloit Police Department.
“Due to safety concerns for our students and staff, our buildings are closed and there is no school today, Friday November 5th. This is a non-instructional day. Our priority is always the safety and well-being of our students and staff. We have been informed that an outside group has a planned event in our community that may be disruptive to the school day and to our students and staff. Considering the behaviors, actions, and language of certain groups who do not consider the safety and well-being of others, our buildings are closed and there is no school today. The decision to close our buildings was made in collaboration with the City of Beloit Police Department. We have zero-tolerance for hate speech, violence, or threats made against our staff and District. We stand together as a District and community against all forms of hate and racism,” said The School District of Beloit.
The City of Beloit Police Department added “In conjunction with the School District of Beloit, a decision was made to cancel school because of the potential of a protest. This was solely done for the safety of the students and staff.”
The protest stems from parent anger over allegations of abuse, that a teacher allegedly used tape to secure a mask to a student’s face.
“I’m hoping people will wake up and realize, one, masks don’t work, two, that children don’t belong in public school, and three, maybe people will start to really think twice before paying their property tax,” said Sally, one of the protestors.
The Beloit Police Department told Eyewitness News, “Through our investigation, we have found no evidence of child abuse or any other crime occurring. Our investigation shows that there was an incident regarding mask wearing in the classroom. We have interviewed the two teachers and all of the students who were present.
“The reporting party provided multiple inconsistencies in the information provided to police and to the media,” police said.
A representative of the Wisconsin chapter of the Proud Boys told Gateway Pundit that the organization planned to provide security for a parents’ protest at the school on November 5th.
The Proud Boys is a far-right wing and self-described “male chauvinist” group which believes that men and Western culture are under siege, according to the International Centre for Counter Terrorism. Nationwide, Proud Boys protests have turned violent during clashes with so-called “anti-fascist” (aka “antifa”) counter-protesters.
“The Wisconsin Proud Boys support any parent, of any political position or background, that feel they have the right to protect their children,” a group representative told the outlet.
“Vaccine or not. Trump or Biden. White or black. It doesn’t matter. This is a fundamental issue that we should all be able to come together on. A teacher abused a child and no parent would put up with this,” their statement continued. “We will not allow this to go by unnoticed. We plan to provide security and general support for the victim’s family and anyone who wishes to attend the event. Everyone should be able to come together on this. Please join us Friday, November 5th.”
Several people gathered in front of the Beloit School District, with their message clear that they do not want students to wear masks in school. Amongst some of the protestors were confirmed members of the Proud Boys, who declined to do an on-camera interview.