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Nevada Union High School Teachers 'No Show' After School Board Vote Lifts Mask Enforcement

GRASS VALLEY (CBS13) — Nevada Union High School was left so short-staffed by teachers' absences Wednesday, hundreds of students had to sit in the school auditorium to watch a movie instead.

Now, as teacher absences continue, the school is closed on Thursday.

The Union Newspaper published a snapshot of a packed auditorium with students watching a Ghostbusters movie because classrooms had no teachers to teach them.

Cassie Angle picked her daughter up following the unusual school day.

"Well, I definitely think it could be handled differently," Cassie Angle said.

Her daughter, Adelaide Angle, said 20 teachers did not show up.

"It felt very weird. It felt very empty, especially walking down the halls because there were so many people just in the theater," Adelaide Angle said.

The absences came following a vote to end mask enforcement Tuesday by the Nevada Union Joint High School District board.

District Superintendent Brett McFadden told the packed audience he felt forced into crafting the change of policy.

"We began to experience significance civil disobedience by that of students and parents," McFadden said, "the enforcement ability of the mask mandate came to a point where it was untenable."

The Nevada Joint Union High School Teachers Association President Eric Mayer issued a statement reading:

"What we are upset about is the violation of the contract and the collective bargaining process…"

California state guidelines require masks indoors for all K-12 schools. Gov. Gavin Newsom is set to announce new mask guidance for schools Monday.

"It's such a touchy subject," Cassie Angle said.

It's another real world lesson of politics during the pandemic — a picture of students stuck with no classrooms.

On Thursday, Nevada Union Principal Kelly Rhoden announced that the school would be closed for the day due to the number of teacher absences. 

"It is our top priority to get students back in the classroom to further their education as soon as possible. We will be working closely with the teachers union and the district administration to find a quick resolution to our current situation," Rhoden said in a message sent to families.

Parents CBS13 spoke to are bracing for a similar situation for the rest of the week.

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