- A Kentucky county school board is having members of the public submit their comments via email.
- The policy change was spurred by an unruly school board meeting earlier this month,
- School board meetings have become increasingly heated across the country.
A Kentucky county school system has become so fed up with disruptive speakers at unruly school board meetings that they’re forcing members of the public to submit their opinions through a 500-word-limit email.
Parents and other community members in Jefferson County — Kentucky’s most populous county — were told ahead of Tuesday’s school board meeting that all opinions and concerns had to be submitted by email to the board’s secretary, according to a special meeting notice.
The protocol was announced after a county school board meeting earlier in October featured a shouting match over whether or not police should be stationed inside schools, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported at the time.
Security had to intervene and end the meeting, the report said.
“Important business must be conducted during our meetings,” JCPS Chief of Communications Renee Murphy said in a statement to Insider. “That was not possible earlier this month.”
Louisville isn’t the only area to adapt to the spike in unruly school board meetings.
In Virginia, the Loudoun County School Board said it’s restricted speakers at Wednesday’s board meeting to parents, students, residents, business owners, and district employees, the district.
A school board meeting during the summer in that district descended into violence and arrests after parents feuded over the school’s treatment of transgender students, according to NBC Washington.
In Florida’s Brevard County, the school board voted on Tuesday to change its public speaking policy, local news station News 13 reported.
The county’s school board can now decide how long they’ll let someone speak, based on how many people sign up to speak, the report said. People are also no longer allowed to hold up signs that block cameras.
Parents in that district had protested over mask mandates in the schools, Florida Today reported.
School board meetings across the country have grown increasingly heated as the country’s culture war drama boils over on topics like mask mandates or teaching so-called “critical race theory.”
In the past week alone, state school boards associations from Missouri, Pennsylvania, and Ohio all withdrew from the National School Boards Association after it sent a letter to the Biden administration last month requesting federal assistance in quelling disruptive meetings.