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State Supreme Court issues temporary injunction on Emergency Order #9

Published: Sep. 10, 2020 at 7:41 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The state Supreme Court has offered a temporary injunction against some of Emergency Order #9 on Thursday, allowing Dane County Schools to open while the case is under review.

Order #9 was issued on August 21 by Public Health Madison and Dane County, which closed all schools grades 3-12, public and private, for in-person learning effective August 24.

The court also granted an original action brought by the institute consolidating the petition with the two others and challenging the Dane Co. Health Department’s order to close all Dane County Schools for grades 3-12.

The court noted that petitioners must file a single, combined brief that cannot exceed 75 pages within 30 days. Also, within 20 days of filing the petitioner’s brief, respondents will also file a combined brief.

Following these steps, within 10 days of the respondent’s filing their brief, the petitioners may file a brief reply or a statement.

The court also noted temporary injunctions are to be issued only when necessary to preserve the status quo.

Public Health Madison and Dane County urged schools to continue the voluntary phasing-in of classes for grades 3-12 and said they were disappointed by the decision.

“The purpose of these orders has been and continues to be to protect the health and safety of our communities,” said Janel Heinrich, director of Public Health Madison & Dane County.

County Executive Joe Parisi denounced the court’s decision, saying it will put kids and teachers back in group settings just as the pandemic is hitting a peak in the community. Just Thursday, there were 456 new cases of the coronavirus reported.

“Our one county accounted for one third of all of Wisconsin’s cases, as test positivity rates hit new highs,” Parisi said. “This virus is here and it’s spreading.”

According to a news release from the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, they filed the original action on Aug. 26 on behalf of eight families, five private schools, School Choice Wisconsin Action and the Wisconsin Council of Religious and Independent Schools.

Executive Director of St. Ambrose Academy Joan Carey was grateful for the decision, saying over 850 supporters made this decision possible.

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