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Parent Attacks Teacher Over School Mask Mandate: 'Emotions Are Really High Right Now'

SUTTER CREEK, Calif. (CBS Sacramento) - A California elementary school teacher is in the hospital after being attacked by a parent over the school's mask mandates.

Violence erupted Wednesday at Sutter Creek Elementary School. District leaders say they're disappointed that this is how the school year started. "This has never happened in our community," Amador County Unified District Superintendent Dr. Torie Gibson told KOVR-TV in Sacramento.

"Emotions are really high right now," Dr. Gibson said.

A district dad came back to campus after picking up his daughter and confronted the school principal. He was angry his daughter was forced to wear a mask inside. When a 6th-grade teacher tried to intervene, the argument quickly turned physical.

"It's absolutely apparent the voices that are very strong about not wearing masks at school," said Dr. Gibson.

The 6th-grade teacher was left bleeding with bruises and cuts to his head and face. He's just out of the hospital and today is back at school. "I think it's really sad that parents are actually stooping to that level," said one district parent, Kristie.

Dr. Gibson sent a letter home yesterday to the entire district about the attack, expressing her disappointment and acknowledging the confusion and division in the county. But parents KOVR spoke with who don't agree with the policy still said they would do anything to keep their kids in the classroom.

"It's a school requirement, they require it," one parent said.

"Put your mask on, take care of one another," added Renee, a district grandmother.

Dr. Gibson said this likely won't be the last on-campus incident over mask policies. "I anticipate more of this happening across the state, especially in rural areas where this is just such a division," she said.

Sutter Creek police say they are investigating and will turn over their investigation to the District Attorney. It's not confirmed whether that parent was arrested or is facing any charges.

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