The School Board is voting on Monday Night. Tell them that you want Masks Optional!!!
The time is NOW!! This is what we've been waiting for!
It's official, the COVID protocol WILL BE DISCUSSED AND VOTED ON at the Monday 12/13/21 board meeting! We need to make the most of this weekend to have the greatest impact on Monday's board meeting as possible. Keep reading for more info on: Masks Optional Petition Attending the Board Meeting Written Testimony-- THIS PROCESS HAS CHANGED How to grow our group Masks Optional Petition We have a MASKS OPTIONAL PETITION, please sign, SHARE and subscribe to our mailing list. We will submit this on Monday in advance of the board meeting. Please send to at least five people. If you don't know where someone stands on this issue, you can send them the website link along with a neutral statement like, "Hey, did you know that most of Idaho has been back to normal with optional masks and minimal quarantine and have been able to stay in-person?" We aren't trying to change anyone's mind, we just want to connect with like-minded parents and staff. If we can get people to the website, they can take a look and decide if they want to join us, but getting them there is the key. Board Meeting Attendance Attendance is limited to 20 so, if you'd like to attend in-person, make a reservation with Sharon.Mast@boiseschools.org and WEAR YELLOW!! Even if the meeting is full, come on down anyway to get on the waiting list for no shows. There's always no shows. We'd like to gauge interest in a rally outside of the district office so, if that's something you're interested in please reply to this e-mail. If a lot of people are interested in a rally, we'll be in touch with more details next week. Written Testimony for the board meeting Fill out this Form The board is not allowing oral testimony so this is the ONLY way to have our voices heard. Written testimony is due by 2:00pm on Monday 12/13/21 via this form. You do not have to have kids in the district or be a staff member to provide testimony. Public schools are taxpayer funded so all Boise residents have a say so Previously, e-mail testimony was accepted, but it is not only accepted by using the form on the agenda website and including physical address and phone number to verify residency. They are not allowing oral testimony so this is the ONLY way to have our voices heard. We know that people who really want the covid protocols to stay in place will be e-mailing so we need to send e-mails, too! The Board Trustees@boiseschools.org Superintendent firstname.lastname@example.org Aren't sure what to write, here's a few ideas and tips:
Try to be succinct, use bullets, if possible
Be polite and sympathetic. Appeal to their humanity. Name-calling, accusing, etc. will get us nowhere.
Something is better than nothing even if it's short and simple like "I support optional masks and not quarantining kids who are not symptomatic."
Personal stories are great about how these policies have impacted you and your children personally.
Provide any visuals you can (have your children write hand-written notes about how masking has impacted them and take a photo or scan to attach, photos of dirty masks or dirty water after washing masks, photos of rashes on your children's faces, videos of them talking about wearing a mask or video of them crying over it, screenshots of your kids' report card showing lots of absences due to quarantine)
Point out that Trustee Nancy Gregory chooses to unmask when given the opportunity and our students and staff should have the option to also.
Point out that BSD parents and students have been attending indoor school sporting events in large numbers, unmasked all semester and, according to district admin for HR, there has been very little spread due to sports If you're on social media, check-in with some of our school teams to see if they've uploaded photos and ask your friends who attend high school and jr high sports games what they've seen during games.
Request no segregation or discrimination between vaxxed and unvaxxed students and staff. Vaccine breakthrough cases are very prevalent, the first case in the US of the omicron variant was a vaccinated individual and early data is showing roughly half of all omicron infections are among vaccinated individuals. Families and relationships are being ruined by "outing" unvaccinated students and students are missing out on school and sports unnecessarily. The vaccine does very little to prevent contracting and transmitting the virus so there should be no discrimination of the unvaccinated.
Provide your own studies/data on the negative impacts or ineffectiveness of masking, strict quarantine and limited extra curricular activities/field trips, link the articles and provide the most important excerpts in the body of the e-mail since they likely won't read the actual articles.
Take the info (and images) from our blog about the changes in the CDH color category thresholds here and here to make sure the board understands how drastically the metrics have changed. The district health admin will likely tell them we are still in the Red Category which, if we were using the metrics we used all last year, would actually be the yellow category. CDH and the district administrators have never explained how the color category thresholds have changed so we want to make every effort possible to ensure the board members know that red now doesn't mean what it did last school year.
Refer them to the CDH public dashboard and the Idaho Public Dashboard since the district will likely be using the CDC data that is e-mailed to them by CDH every week for the presentation. The CDC data that is e-mailed is more accurate at time of e-mail, but doesn't get updated when the backlog in reporting has a chance to catch up so it's less accurate over time. The public dashboards, however, are continually being updated and are more accurate after-the-fact than the CDC data. The district will likely present data that shows the peak in cases occurring three weeks after the actual peak and shows higher case rates currently than the CDH and the Idaho dashboards are showing.
Mention that 164/167 school districts are not mandating masks or strict quarantine and are staying in-person 5 days a week
Mention that A LOT of healthy students are being excluded from school due to the current quarantine procedures.
Any other ideas you have that you think would persuade them.
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WE CAN LEAVE MASKS BEHIND IN 2021 AND HAVE A MASK-OPTIONAL 2022!