Ohio School Boards Association Pulls Membership After National Group Called Parents ‘Domestic Terrorists’

“The Board of Trustees’ decision was prompted by NSBA’s recent letter to President Joe Biden requesting federal intervention at local school board meetings”

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The Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) Board of Trustees has voted to end its affiliation with the National School Boards Association (NSBA) after the NSBA labeled parents “domestic terrorists” and requested a federal crackdown on alleged “threats” 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 said in a statement.

“We were not informed of or asked for any input into the creation of the letter sent to the president,” Lewis continued. “We believe in the value of parental and community discussion at school board meetings, and 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. But dealing with such interference should be dealt with at the local level, not by federal officials.”

“We believe the letter from NSBA leadership demonstrated how out of touch the national association is with the concerns of local school boards and the principle of local control. Because of that, OSBA no longer sees the value of continued NSBA membership,” Lewis concluded.
The OSBA also sent a letter to the NSBA explaining their decision.

“OSBA’s decision to terminate membership and affiliation with the NSBA Association is a direct result of the letter sent by you to President Joe Biden late last month,” the OSBA’s letter said. “The letter purported to be sent on behalf of state associations and school board members across the nation. This assertion could not be further from the truth. OSBA was not notified of the letter, nor were we asked for our thoughts on the matter. If we had been consulted, we would have strongly disagreed with NSBA’s decision to request federal intervention as well as your claims of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”

“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 letter continued. “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 letter concluded, “OSBA can no longer allow NSBA to speak for our association or our membership and no longer see the value of continued membership.”
In the NSBA’s original letter that prompted a backlash, the NSBA said that individuals were committing “heinous actions” that were “equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism.”

“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 said.

“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 said.