Judge denies request to block N.J. school mask mandate

Masks are still required in New Jersey schools.

A federal judge has denied a request from a group of New Jersey parents to block Gov. Phil Murphy’s mask mandate for schools.

U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty on Friday denied a request from the group Free NJ Kids for a temporary restraining order against the mandate.

“I cannot find that this is an irrational classification. And I find that the State could reasonably rely on the guidance from [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] and other places to promulgate such a rule,” McNulty said during the hearing, according to NJ.com.

The order was entered on Monday, and the rest of the lawsuit will move forward.

Murphy spokeswoman Alexandra Altman said he remains committed to keeping schools open for in-person instruction, while keeping teachers, staff, and students safe.

“New Jersey’s school mask requirement, which is in accordance with guidance from the CDC and recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics, is vital in slowing the spread of the virus and allows our students and educators to return to the classroom safely,” she said.

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