2021 REWIND: ADVOCATING AGAINST THE DISTRICT’S INTEREST – Waukee School Board President tells parent they should sue district over lack of mask requirement

Originally published Oct. 24, 2021

Lori Lyon is the president of the Waukee School Board. Lyon is up for re-election this fall. In her bio, she said she has dedicated most of her professional career to education and believes in working together to meet the “diverse social, emotional and programming needs of our students.”

“As a board, we must advocate to ensure that cuts in state funding don’t negatively affect those needs while remaining fiscally responsible to taxpayers for a world-class education.”

It is an interesting line — “remaining fiscally responsible to taxpayers.”

It is interesting because, according to a Facebook post from Erin Dahl, Lyon told her to sue school districts that do not mandate masks.

On Sept. 16, Waukee held a special board meeting to vote on a mask mandate. There were six board members present rather than the normal seven.

The vote for a mask mandate was tied 3-3 and therefore failed. Lyon, the board president, voted for the mask mandate.

About 10 days later, Dahl told group members in “Iowans for Universal Masks in Schools” if they’re interested in suing their school district to reach out to her as there are two law firms taking parents and teachers.

Dahl responded to a question about why someone would sue their own school district, telling them she was told by Lyon to sue the school district.

“I was told by the School Board President (Lyon) to sue the school, it is the only way to get our kids safely back,” Dahl wrote. “I’m a public school fan. I was a teacher at public schools for 13 years, hubby is still teaching and risking his life every day.”

So you have a school board president telling the wife of a district employee to sue school districts that do not require masks. That is quite something.

The Iowa Standard reached out to Lyon to ask her about the situation. She responded:

“I vote in ways consistent with our district not getting sued for a reason,” Lyon said when asked to comment on her telling someone they should sue the district over the lack of a mask mandate. “My record speaks for itself.”

The Iowa Standard asked Lyon more directly if she told a parent in the district to sue the district if it doesn’t require masks.

We have not heard from Lyon regarding our follow-up question.


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