The Department of Education tapped National School Board Association (NSBA) President Viola Garcia to serve on a federal education board a few weeks after she wrote a letter comparing parent protests to “domestic terrorism.”
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona appointed NSBA President Viola Garcia to the National Assessment Governing Board, which creates a “report card” on student performance nationwide. Garcia joined the board Oct. 13, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
Garcia and NSBA CEO Chip Slaven sent a letter Sept. 29 addressed to the Biden administration requesting the assistance of the federal government in dealing with allegedly unruly parents at school board meetings. The letter claimed that teachers and school administrators had been threatened with violence and harassment. The letter said these actions were “the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”
According to emails obtained by Parents Defending Education, a concerned parent group, Slaven and Garcia sent the letter without permission of the NSBA board. The organization’s board has since issued an apology for the letter. (RELATED: National School Board Walks Back Letter Comparing Parents To ‘Domestic Terrorists’ After Bombshell Emails Exposed White House Collaboration)
“On behalf of the NSBA, we regret and apologize for the letter. To be clear, the safety of school board members, other public school officials and educators, and students is our top priority, and there remains important work to be done on this issue,” the letter reads. “We apologize also for the strain and stress this situation has caused you and your organizations.”
The White House was in communication with the NSBA for “several weeks” before the letter dropped. According to emails, the White House requested additional information on “specific threats” taking place nationwide.
Days after the NSBA’s letter was published, Attorney General Merrick Garland directed the Department of Justice to create a task force to determine how “federal enforcement tools can be used.”
House Republicans are now calling on Garland to withdraw his memo, according to the Washington Examiner. Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan asked Garland whether it was a coincidence that he issued a directive five days after the NSBA letter was sent.
Garland claimed it was a “relevant factor.”
BREAKING: House Republicans demand that Attorney General Merrick Garland “fully and unequivocally withdraw [his] memorandum” directing the FBI to investigate parents under domestic terrorism laws.
We will not stop until the Biden Administration backs down. pic.twitter.com/uaZykdg1r8
— Christopher F. Rufo ⚔️ (@realchrisrufo) October 25, 2021
“I am sure that the communication from the National Association of School Boards [sic] was discussed between the White House and the Justice Department, and that’s perfectly appropriate,” Garland said.