10-15-2020: P.A.C.T. In the Press…Again! Public Outcry Continues
Loudoun County School Board Backpedals on Policy Limiting Free Speech Indefinitely After Public Outcry
Loudoun County School Board voted this week to revise their “Professional Conduct” policy governing employee speech off of school property. Up until the latest meeting, members recommended to approve and accept the policy.
Apparently, public outcry from teachers unions and community members led to this decision.
Board member Jeff Morse announced that the policy would be referred back to the Human Resources and Talent Development (HRTD). There was minimal discussion on the subject, and no explanation why the board decided to refer the policy draft for review.
Morse deferred when asked by chair member Brenda Sheridan to offer remarks on the decision.
“No, I think we have very clear indication from the public that it needs significant rework,” she said.
The measure received a unanimous vote of 9-0. It is unclear to what extent the policy will be revised.
As it stands, the policy proposes to command oversight to Loudoun County Public School (LCPS) employee speech in all forms of communication, including social media, both during and apart from school hours.
“Employees are expected to support the school division’s commitment to action-oriented equity practices through the performance of their job duties, as the Division engages in the disruption and dismantling of white supremacy, systemic racism, and language and actions motivated by race, religion, country of origin, gender identity, sexual orientation, and/or ability.”
In an interview with The Virginia Star, LCPS parent Scott Mineo shared that he believes the board will continue to stand by the contents of the draft.
“I think the decision to not cancel it last night says that they’re not done with it. I don’t believe for a second that they’re done,” he said, “I don’t know what they have up their sleeves.”
Mineo is also the creator of the website, Parents Against Critical Race Theory (PACT), which shares the goings-on of LCPS related to critical race theory, racial equity, and social justice in general.
LCPS Public Information Officer Wayde Byard refused to issue a comment on the matter.
Since Wayde Byard refused to comment to The Virginia Star, P.A.C.T. will help Wayde out. Here is Wayde’s FOIA response to a parent just last week. No wonder Wayde refused to comment!