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School Board Mocks Parents, 'Unfortunate' Remarks Go Viral

President of board in Oakley, Calif., resigns after video of virtual meeting circulates online
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 19, 2021 8:59 AM CST

(Newser) – The president of a California school board has resigned and parents are calling for more heads to roll after a virtual meeting showed multiple board members laughing and mocking parents who want their kids back in school. Per Fox News, Oakley Union Elementary School Board members apparently thought no one else had access to Wednesday's meeting and freely eye-rolled at parents complaining about schools still not being fully open during the pandemic; video was shared by the group Reopen California Schools. "Are we alone?" board member Kim Beede says to the group, before apparently addressing an online comment made about her: "B----, if you're gonna call me out, I'm gonna f--- you up. Sorry, that's just me." Her comment is followed by one from board President Lisa Brizendine, who says "it's really unfortunate [parents] want to pick on us because they want their babysitters back."

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In a statement, Superintendent Greg Hetrick says the board members' remarks were "unfortunate and truly inappropriate," adding they "were not in alignment with our vision and are definitely not what any of us stand for as leaders. I know that we lost trust with the community." Parent Ashley Stalf tells Fox that after hearing the board members' "genuine insincerity," she's not sure what their motives are anymore. "We thought they had our backs," she says. "We thought that they were advocates as much as we were for our children." Bay City News reports Brizendine has stepped down as board president, but there are calls for other board members to resign, too. Meanwhile, some are miffed at Hetrick, who was also on the call but said nothing about the comments. "For him to sit there and not speak up was shocking to me," one parent tells KGO. (Read more school board stories.)

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