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Mask mandates get even more confusing

Missouri's two largest counties say "chaos now reigns" in the state after a judge's ruling handcuffed local health departments from issuing COVID orders. Plus, conservatives in the Kansas Legislature want to ban critical race theory in schools, but educators worry those efforts could hamper their ability to teach history honestly.

St. Louis County and Jackson County filed a motion to intervene in a Cole County case in which some residents and business owners sued the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, challenging its ability to issue mask orders. After a judge struck down those orders as unconstitutional, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt opted not to appeal.

Since then, Schmitt has used the decision to threaten school districts around the state with lawsuits — what St. Louis and Jackson Counties call "a campaign of litigation terror." St. Louis Public Radio's Sarah Kellogg has this primer on where Missouri is now.

How should Kansas schools teach history and race? They’re getting plenty of advice, most of it conflicting and often angry. As Suzanne Perez of the Kansas News Service reports, what started as anger over critical race theory has evolved into attacks on public schools.

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This episode of Kansas City Today is hosted by Laura Ziegler. It is produced by Byron Love and edited by Gabe Rosenberg & Lisa Rodriguez

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I partner with communities to uncover the ignored or misrepresented stories by listening and letting communities help identify and shape a narrative. My work brings new voices, sounds, and an authentic sense of place to our coverage of the Kansas City region. My goal is to tell stories on the radio, online, on social media and through face to face conversations that enhance civic dialogue and provide solutions.
As an on-demand producer, I am focused on using my skills and experiences across multiple digital applications, platforms and media fields to create community focused audio, video and on-demand products for KCUR Studios. The media that I produce aims to inform, entertain and connect with the Kansas City metro area as we continue to learn from each other. Email me at byronlove@kcur.org.
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