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ERLANGEN, Germany (LifeSiteNews) — A German school not registered with the government, where children were being taught in a mask-free environment, was closed following a raid by heavily armed police on January 20.

The school had been set up by parents in an effort to protect their children from some of the most traumatic and long-term damaging effects of COVID restrictions such as mask mandates currently imposed on school children in Germany.

According to local reports, the raid took place after the police was tipped that school-aged children were being taught at a private property in a small town near Erlangen in Bavaria during school hours.

Following the raid, the city of Erlangen stated that the school, which was “operating without a permit,” had been closed.

According to German online website, there had been previous unsuccessful searches at the school, including an attempt by police to gain access to the building without a warrant.

One of the mothers told that on January 20, some 30 to 35 police officers successfully stormed the property in full gear, masked in black, and equipped with batons and automatic weapons.

The entrance door of the school was broken open with a battering ram. This was later confirmed by the office for press and public relations of the city of Erlangen.

The 15 children, aged 4 to 14, who were present on that day attempted to flee to the upper floor but were stopped by the officers. They were then separated from their parents and gathered on the second floor before being questioned individually for four hours.

According to the, the police used intimidation tactics in order to obtain information from the children, telling them that they would be placed into juveniles’ homes if they refused to provide their names. The police also told the parents that they would have to file a missing person’s report before their children could be returned to them.

Money and school equipment were also confiscated by the police. The city of Erlangen stated that any confiscated property would be returned following an investigation.

In their previous schools, the children had been forced to wear a mask from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., even while using the restroom. When eating, the mask could only be lifted, but not removed completely.

One of the mothers characterized this as a “torture method” and reported that some children even fainted at home after having been forced to wear the mask all day.

The families involved in the mask-free school are not confident that going to court would make a difference. Mask mandates have been upheld in the past.

In Germany, children are forced to attend school in government-sanctioned environments. Private schools essentially follow a curriculum outlined by the government. Homeschooling is banned.