Ears On The Board of Education: September 23, 2021
by Diane Payne
The Board’s deliberate and mean-spirited disrespect for the students, parents, educators, and community members was the lowlight of this meeting. Board President Wilkerson moved speakers way down the agenda, calling on them after a lengthy presentation. At this “hybrid meeting”, the Board allowed into the auditorium only those who signed up to speak in person. With about 80% of the room empty, at least 50 people could fit with more than adequate distancing. After all, the Board has no problem with filling classrooms with little ventilation to capacity or having students, in the words of Student Representative Rebecca Allen, “packed like sardines” in hallways. In fact, half of the Board members attended virtually, including Julia Danzy and Marie McColgan, who have supported all of the administration’s plans for full return to school buildings since last year, falsely claiming that most parents supported the administration’s plan. Once again, there was a persistent echo in the auditorium, making it difficult for attendees to hear. The camera was positioned so far back that those viewing at home could not see the faces of the Board members or tell who was speaking.