The Ohio School Boards Association, also known as OSBA, Board of Trustees voted to bring its affiliation with the National School Boards Association to an end after the latter organization requested there be a federal crackdown on “threats” being made to school board members.
“The Board of Trustees’ decision was prompted by NSBA’s recent letter to President Joe Biden requesting federal intervention at local school board meetings,” OSBA Chief Executive Officer Rick Lewis went on to say in a statement.
The OSBA’s move is the latest in a wave of criticism and backlash against the NSBA over the letter, which the national organization apologized for last week. The Pennsylvania School Boards Association was the first state-level group to rescind its membership to the NSBA on October 14.
The OSBA slammed the NSBA for sending the letter without first consulting the state organization and for undermining parent and community-centered education in favor of federal control.
“OSBA believes strongly in the value of parental and community discussion at school board meetings, and we reject the labeling of parents as domestic terrorists,” the state association went on to state in a letter addressed to the NSBA on Monday. “There is tremendous value in allowing and encouraging the public to have meaningful input into the decision-making process. However, that participation should not come at the expense of interfering with the board’s ability to conduct its business or subjecting individual board members to threats of violence, abuse, or harassment. That said, dealing with such interference should be dealt with at the local level, not by federal officials.”
The NSBA apologized on Friday for its letter, which preceded Attorney General Merrick Garland’s decision to issue a DOJ memo.
“On behalf of NSBA, we regret and apologize for the letter,” the organization stated in a letter penned to the members of the NSBA. “To be clear, the safety of school board members, other public school officials and educators, and students is our top priority, and there remains important work to be done on this issue. However, there was no justification for some of the language included in the letter. We should have had a better process in place to allow for consultation on a communication of this significance. We apologize also for the strain and stress this situation has caused you and your organizations.”
“As we’ve reiterated since the letter was sent, we deeply value not only the work of local school boards that make important contributions within our communities, but also the voices of parents, who should and must continue to be heard when it comes to decisions about their children’s education, health, and safety,” the apology letter said.
In the original letter that was sent out to the Biden administration, the NSBA didn’t blame parents, but went on to claim that certain individuals, including parents, were the root cause of chaos that was happening at local school board meetings across the United States.
Essentially, they were trying to silence any parent who tried to exercise their parental authority by demanding to know what kind of sick and twisted garbage they were being taught that flies in the face of the values they themselves want their children to learn and hold dear.
“Coupled with attacks against school board members and educators for approving policies for masks to protect the health and safety of students and school employees, many public school officials are also facing physical threats because of propaganda purporting the false inclusion of critical race theory within classroom instruction and curricula,” the letter stated.
“As these acts of malice, violence, and threats against public school officials have increased, the classification of these heinous actions could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes,” the letter continued.