A school district in Colorado brought more law enforcement officers in for the first day of classes.
The move comes after a mask mandate applying to pre-school through 8th-grade students created "tensions in the community."
The Eagle County Sheriff's Office urged protestors opposed to the mandate to stay away from schools.
A Colorado school district increased its police presence on the first day of classes after announcing a mask mandate for young children.
The Eagle County Sheriff's Office said in a press release that law enforcement presence would be increased at several schools due to "tensions in the community."
Several parents in the district, which is about two hours west of Denver, voiced their frustration with a potential mask mandate at a school board meeting last week, the Vial Daily reported.
One father said he was "done with masks" and would remove his child from school if they had to be vaccinated, according to the report. Another father said a mask mandate would be "the end of the public school system," predicting that parents in the county would withdraw their kids from schools in protest.
The Eagle County School District announced on Friday that it was imposing a mask mandate for children in pre-school through the eighth grade to begin the school year Monday, according to a news release. The mandate will also apply to middle school indoor athletics.
The district's release also urged people who disagree with its decision to protest at "locations other than schools" to avoid disruption and additional stress on students and teachers.
The sheriff's office and the school district did not immediately return Insider's requests for comment.
The school district's decision to impose a mask mandate is a reversal from the position it outlined at the school board meeting last Wednesday, according to the Vial Daily. The district also sent an email last week stating that "there will be no mandatory mask requirement in school district buildings."
The mandate followed a meeting between school district leaders and Eagle County Public Health, which ordered the district to require students of certain ages to wear masks, according to the district's news release.
"Unfortunately, here we are," superintendent Philip Qualman said in the release. "As has been the case since the beginning of the pandemic, this disease does not care about our schedules or when school starts. Nevertheless, we regret the short notice."
The district said in its release that families who do not want their kids to wear masks could enroll them in online school or opt for homeschooling.
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