A school board member in a California city was caught on a hot mic/video stream revealing herself to be seemingly less than empathetic to one or more parents who have made it clear that they want their kids to start receiving classroom instruction again.
The Oakley, Calif., school board member may have been referring to one concerned parent in particular when she said to the other panelists, “Are we alone? B*tch, if you’re going to call me out, I’m going to f*** you up! That’s just me,” which prompted laughter from her colleagues who weren’t aware at the time that the meeting was being broadcast to the public. The video was subsequently shared on Twitter by Reopen California Schools and by a parent on YouTube.
Another school board member dismisses the parents’ concerns with the commentary that “they want to pick on us; they want their babysitters back.”
In the back and forth, a second school board member makes a valid point, by itself, that the board is comprised of “real people,” i.e., parents who have sent their kids to public schools, and thus have “a vested interest in the process.”
That would suggest, however, that the officials should be even more sensitive to the feelings of other parents that schools should reopen for in-person learning.
She also implies that the board is in possession of information that is not being shared with the community.
Schools in the city of Oakley, which is located in the San Francisco Bay area in Contra Costa County, are apparently still only operating on a remote-learning basis.
A third board member supposedly alludes to the possibility that parents want kids out of the house so they can smoke pot.
At the end of the approximately eight-minute chat, one of the board members realizes that the meeting “is open to the public right now,” at which point the session disconnects.
A third board member insinuates that parents just want their kids in school so they can smoke pot during the day.
— Reopen California Schools (@ReopenCASchools) February 18, 2021
As you can imagine, the seemingly cavalier attitude of the board toward parents received a failing grade on social media. Here is just a sample:
My question for these school board members, others like them, @WeAreCTA , and @GavinNewsom is if they plan to open schools before or after the next teen suicide? Before or after tens of thousands of more children’s live are destroyed? #OpenSchoolsNow before it gets even worse.
— Reopen California Schools (@ReopenCASchools) February 18, 2021
So, you azzholes don’t see yourselves as educating the future generations, but baby sitters?!! GFY. I’d pull my kids out of that school so fast.
— Robert is the focus for 2021. (@I_am_Thatman) February 18, 2021
The judgement and rhetoric towards parents (and students frankly who advocated publicly to go back) who are begging to reopen schools for their children’s well-being is disheartening to say the least.
— Arlington Parents for Education (@ArlParentsforEd) February 18, 2021
Unions and many school boards are the sole reason the system is broken. This isn’t about our children, it’s about their agendas.
— Scott Coleman (@bandphan) February 18, 2021
Wow. The entitlement and disrespect is too much. These people can’t continue to be in these positions when this is how they see the population they are supposed to serve.
— CarolMD (@carolvidal22) February 18, 2021
I’m so angry for the families and the parents of this district!!! Please fight back and get these heartless, entitled “public servants” out of their positions!
— Katie Elizabeth (@bigklittleatie) February 18, 2021
I looked up Oakley's test scores and ratings. Babysitter status confirmed.
— ArmaliteAR-180B 🇻🇦 (@ArSpade) February 18, 2021
These people are despicable
— Jen Stroup (@JenStroup) February 18, 2021
No, parents don’t want a babysitter. Parents like me, whose kids returned to the classroom in the fall, are fighting for the mental health & physical well being of entire generation of kids being denied in-person instruction. Kids are dying, and these educators don’t care. 🤬
— Jennifer Wright (@JenWEsq) February 18, 2021
Dang I would find a way to put my kids in private school so quick if I lived there. It’s not because they’re scared of COVID that they don’t want to open, they just don’t want to work. It’s gaslighting. They are in fact the lazy ones.
— Sarah Grubb (@Happyhomemake12) February 18, 2021
Oakley Union Elementary Board President @LisaBriz2 says parents don’t know what goes on behind the scenes and that’s why “they want to pick on us”. Wrong. We know exactly what goes on and we’ve had enough. Standing up for students is not “picking on” teachers.
— Shannon Thompson (@Shandiego216) February 18, 2021
I get a lot of people want their kids back in classrooms, but this is HIGHLY unprofessional coming from a board member! She should be kicked off IMO
— Katie (@katie18996967) February 18, 2021
Embedded below is the eight-minute video uploaded to YouTube by parent Kendra Romero.
The attitude displayed by these officials may be what’s also reflected in the likely recall election of lockdown-loving Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) February 14, 2021
Ex-San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, Newsom’s main (at this point) GOP rival in the anticipated California recall, has just released a statement about the Oakley school board gaffes:
“I have two kids in public schools, and I’m appalled to hear education administrators mocking and insulting the very real concerns that millions of parents are feeling right now. This out-of-touch attitude starts at the top with Gavin Newsom, who has continued to let private schools offer in-person education while erecting barriers that have locked most of California’s kids out of class. As governor I will do everything in my power to make sure our children and teachers safely return to the classroom.”
In the meantime, a Change.org petition has launched that calls for either the immediate resignation or recall of the school board members. School Superintendent Greg Hetrick has apologized for what he described as “unfortunate and truly inappropriate comments” and says he will work to rebuild community trust in the Oakley school district.
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