Parents in the North Clackamas School District in Oregon are furious about the board’s decision to go online, especially in light of the controversy surrounding the teaching of LGBTQ+ material in the local schools and the area’s subpar academic performance as revealed by a Department of Education report.
According to KATV in Arkansas, the board’s action comes in response to a meeting in October where parents voiced their displeasure with the curriculum and claimed that the district was trying to keep them in the dark.
One father reportedly said, “This district and the way it runs is a complete dumpster fire,” at the meeting. Stop deceiving us by claiming everything is fine in your mini newsletters.
While others criticized the board for allegedly sowing the seeds of student division, another father warned the board that “school choice and privatization of education” are on the way.
According to KATV, one of the main defenses put forth by parents against LGBTQ+ content in the district’s schools was that it emphasized teaching about “gender-affirming care” or encouraged “pornographic” books available in school libraries.
Parents claimed that the district is stifling their voices and that the virtual shift is just the school board’s most recent attempt to ensure that their complaints are not heard.
It’s not homophobic or transphobic to think that children shouldn’t be sexualized or otherwise mutilated under the guise of the LGBT community, one mother who identifies as a member of the LGBTQ+ community told KATV, expressing outrage over content in local schools as well.
But assuming all gay and trans people support that is homophobic, transphobic, and extremely harmful to our community, she continued, “because the majority of us do not.”
Parents in the district called the board “bullies” for taking action against material they disagree with, claiming they are attempting to protect their children’s interests.
One mother allegedly stated in the report that board members were “laughing,” “rolling their eyes,” and “using their phones” while parents spoke.
The contentious Maia Kobabe book “Gender Queer,” which has drawn criticism from parents in school districts across the country, was brought up at the October meeting by one mother, who also paraded a poster with explicit images from the book.
Board member Jena Benologa said, “‘Okay, I think we’re going to have to shut this down and go back online,'” and she and other members left as the room erupted in protest.
Some parents reportedly stayed behind and delivered their complaints to an active live stream as attendees reportedly yelled, “you’re just afraid” and “you have disrespected us.”
The board explained to Fox News Digital that meetings are now held online as a result of the behavior of some attendees at the contentious gathering in October.
According to NCSD, which spoke to Fox News Digital, “We value public input during our board meetings, which is why we invite community members to sign up and address the board with their comments and concerns.” “Whether the meeting is in person or online, the board members’ primary duty during that specified time on the agenda is to listen. Since there isn’t a place for discussion, they don’t offer right away. Speakers may feel frustrated by this and it might add to the impression that they are not being heard.”
The district also stated that some audience members’ behavior “prevented the board from conducting the meeting in an orderly manner, including the opportunity to hear further comments” and that this is why the board meeting on October 27 was moved online.
“At the online board meeting on November 17, many of the parents who spoke on October 27 and complained that their voices were being silenced did so again. Whether meetings are held in person or online, they were given the same speaking opportunities offered during every board meeting, and this will continue,” the sentence included.