The most recent installment in the ongoing saga of school administrators antagonizing parents comes from Chris Rufo’s latest article for City Journal, outlining the shocking story of local authorities in Round Rock, Texas, coming after two fathers for their vocal critiques of the school board:
The latest and most egregious example comes from Round Rock, Texas. In a series of school board meetings this fall, two fathers—a minister named Jeremy Story and a retired Army captain named Dustin Clark—spoke out against alleged corruption and school officials’ hostility toward parents. Journalist Pedro Gonzalez reported that at an August meeting, Story had calmly “produced evidence that the board had covered up an alleged assault by the superintendent, Hafedh Azaiez, against a mistress.” The superintendent and school board president cut him off midsentence and ordered officers to remove him from the premises.
At the next meeting, in September, with the district’s controversial mask mandate on the agenda, the school board locked the majority of parents out of the room, preventing them from speaking. Clark and other frustrated parents asked the board to open the nearly empty room to the public. Instead, school board president Amy Weir directed officers to remove Clark from school property. As he was dragged out by two officers, Clark shouted to the audience: “It’s an open meeting! Shame on you. Communist! Communist! Let the public in!”
A few days later, the school district, in coordination with law enforcement, sent police officers to the homes of both men, arrested them, and put them in jail on charges of “disorderly conduct with intent to disrupt a meeting.” Families and supporters of Story and Clark held an all-night protest outside the jail, until the men were released the following morning. They are now raising funds for their legal defense.
These stories are no longer isolated incidents. As Rufo points out, “In Loudoun County, Virginia, for example, where parents have protested against critical race theory and a sexual assault cover-up, the superintendent asked the county sheriff to deploy a SWAT team, riot control unit, and undercover agents to monitor parents at school board meetings.” (The sheriff thankfully refused.) And “even the FBI, under the direction of Attorney General Merrick Garland, has mobilized to monitor parents at school board meetings and, if necessary, prosecute them under domestic terrorism laws. The National School Boards Association, which had requested the federal intervention in a letter to the Justice Department, was later forced to apologize after state chapters strenuously objected to the tone and content of that letter. Yet the Biden administration has moved forward with the effort, creating a task force of federal agents and attorneys to coordinate against parent protesters.”
Progressive bureaucrats nationwide are attempting to force parents into submission. As Story tells Rufo, “This isn’t just about Dustin [Clark] and me. It is about everyone. If they can come for us and get away with it, school boards nationwide will be emboldened to come for you.” It’s up to conservatives to work to stop it.