Entire School Board Resigns In California After Being Caught On Video Disparaging Parents Who Wanted Schools To Reopen


Marlo Safi Culture Reporter
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The entire school board of a California public school has resigned after members were caught making disparaging remarks about parents during a meeting they thought was private, numerous sources reported.

Kim Beede, Erica Ippolito, Richie Masadas and Lisa Brizendine, members of the Oakley Union Elementary School Board, all resigned following a petition that circulated calling for the board’s resignation over the “disrespectful” comments members made, according to ABC 7.

Superintendent Greg Hetrick, in a statement to district families, said “I want to inform you that Board Members Kim Beede, Erica Ippolito, Richie Masadas and Lisa Brizendine have submitted their resignations from their position on the OUESD School Board,” ABC 7 reported. 

The statement read in part:

This was a difficult decision, but we hear the community’s concerns, and we believe yielding to your request that we step down will allow the District to move forward. Please do not let our failure in judgement cast a shadow on the exceptional work that our teachers, administrators and hard-working employees are doing for the students of this District. They deserve and will need your support as you move forward.

Brizendine, the board’s president, announced her resignation earlier Friday and issued an apology.

“My remark was callous and uncalled for and for that I am truly sorry,” her statement read in part.  (RELATED: ‘Callous And Uncalled For’: Public School Board President Resigns After Being Caught Disparaging Parents’ Push To Reopen Schools)

School board members attending the virtual meeting made several remarks about parents in the district who wanted students to return to classrooms. Brizendine commented that the public often forgets that there are real people on the other side of the letters the public is writing, and implied that parents wanted their children to return to classrooms because “they want their babysitters back.”

Kim Beede used expletives when referring to a social media post, presumably one that was a letter about school reopenings. After Richie Masadas, another board member, commented on how easy it is for people to hide behind a screen when talking to the board, Beede referred to the post. “[Expletive,] if you’re going to call me out, I’m going to [expletive] you up,” Beede said. “Sorry, that’s just me.”

Masadas also talked about how his brother has a delivery service for medical marijuana, and parents who have kids at school are part of his clientele.

A petition was launched following the meeting demanding that the board resign because of their behavior.

“They did not realize they were being broadcast and that the public could hear them,” the petition said. “During that time board members decided to speak in a VERY disrespectful way about parents in the school district, including using profanity, speaking about parents using marijuana, and that parents just wanted their babysitters back.”

Hetrick apologized Thursday for the “unfortunate and truly inappropriate comments” that parents heard at the meeting.