A parent jumped on a stage Tuesday night after a school board member called him an “asshole” following a heated exchange over mask policy and Critical Race Theory curriculum, video shows.
Rich Tyson, the father of a girl in the Penfield Central School District, jumped on stage and confronted William Yaeger, a school board member who provoked him after he delivered a public comment criticizing the school for its mask policy that requires students to wear face coverings inside, according to WROC.
“Be respectful. You’re an elected representative to represent us. This is isn’t about you, bud.” Tyson said. Yaeger then taunts the dad and calls him an “asshole.”
“You’re not gonna stand up here and do anything to me, a**hole,” Yaeger said.
Other school members had to stop Yaeger and Tyson from getting into any physical altercation, which stopped the meeting. The public had to leave, and the conference eventually continued virtually. (RELATED: ‘You Will Be Voted Out’: Former School Board Member Warns District About Promoting Critical Race Theory Without Involving Public)
After a parent asked NY school board member Bill Yaeger to be respectful to other parents, Yaeger told him, “You’re not gonna stand up here and do anything to me, a**hole.” The parent then confronts him & Yaeger is physicallyMasks. pic.twitter.com/xD3E25DChC
— Amanda (@AmandaPresto) June 9, 2021
“He [Yaeger] started kind of motioning for me to come toward the stage, which I did start walking, then he dropped an F-bomb on me,” Tyson told WROC. “That’s when I walked and jumped up on the stage, not to be physically confrontational, but I wanted to address it with him face to face. By the time I got there he had become essentially unhinged…”
“I’m a passionate parent and there were many others in the room and we all felt kind of disrespected by his cavalier attitude toward our comments,” Tyson said, WROC reported.
Laura Zwick, a parent at the meeting with her daughter for a scheduled robotics presentation, told WROC she was “disgusted” by what she saw from some people that night.
Before the altercation, parents spoke out against the school’s mask policy and Critical Race Theory curriculum, according to The Daily Wire. Penfield Central School District allows students the option to wear masks outside but requires them inside.
The district issued a statement Wednesday afternoon.
“On behalf of the Board, I want to publicly acknowledge that Mr. Yaeger’s behavior was completely inappropriate,” said Board president Mark Elledge. “As a Board, it is our job to listen and to treat our community with respect,” he added.
“In turn, the District is asking community members to present their comments and concerns in a peaceful manner and to treat the Board members with respect,” Elledge said.
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