On September 29, 2021 the National School Boards Association released a letter directed to President Biden requesting "Federal Assistance to Stop Threats and Acts of Violence Against Public Schoolchildren, Public School Board Members, and Other Public School District Officials and Educators." Here is the letter with my comments inserted along the way.
Re: Federal Assistance to Stop Threats and Acts of Violence Against Public Schoolchildren, Public School Board Members, and Other Public School District Officials and Educators
Dear Mr. President:
On behalf of our state associations and the more than 90,000 school board members who govern our country’s 14,000 local public school districts educating more than 50 million schoolchildren, NSBA appreciates your leadership to end the proliferation of COVID-19 in our communities and our school districts. We also appreciate recent discussions with White House and U.S. Department of Education staff on many critical issues facing public schools, including threats school officials are receiving.
In addition, we applaud your actions to restore resources to school districts that have not yet received their education stabilization funding through the Project SAFE (Supporting America’s Families and Educators) grant program for coronavirus recovery efforts, including the use of face masks and other precautions to help prevent COVID-19 infections among students and educators. Now, we ask that the federal government investigate, intercept, and prevent the current threats and acts of violence against our public school officials through existing statutes, executive authority, interagency and intergovernmental task forces, and other extraordinary measures to ensure the safety of our children and educators, to protect interstate commerce, and to preserve public school infrastructure and campuses.
Footnote 9 links to two articles. The first states that "Police are investigating a man who flashed a Nazi salute and chanted “Heil Hitler” during a raucous Birmingham Board of Education meeting over a mask mandate for students." The second article states that Grand Ledge school board had to go into recess twice during the meeting. Once because someone went over their 3-minute time limit during public comment, and refused to sit down. The second time was after public comment, when two board members were speaking to one another and the audience kept interrupting. Hence, the footnote supports that an individual yelled a Nazi salute at one meeting but not two. No threats or acts of violence.
“So you read the letter? That’s your source?” Jordan asked incredulously. “Is there some study, some effort, some investigation someone did that, said there’s been a disturbing uptick, or you just take the words of the National School Board Association?”
Garland then confirmed it wasn’t until NSBA contacted him that his department began to investigate claims of violence and terrorism.
“Well, the National School Board Association, which represents thousands of school boards and school board members, says that there are these kinds of threats. When we read in the newspapers reports of threats of violence—” Garland said before Jordan interjected again.
“The source for this … was the National School Boards Association letter,” Jordan reiterated before his time expired. (The Federalist)
In February 2022, the National School Boards Association (NSBA) retained attorney Philip Kiko and the law firm of Michael Best & Friedrich LLP to conduct an independent review of the events and procedures surrounding the September 29, 2021, letter sent from the NSBA to President Biden requesting federal investigation of and assistance with events at school board meetings. That review resulted in some astonishing findings.