An emergency meeting of a New Jersey school board devolved into chaos as officials walked back a plan to strip all holiday names from their school calendar in an effort to be more politically correct.
The Randolph Board of Education voted 8-1 on Monday “to reinstate the holidays after dozens of members of the community voiced outrage during the public comment portion of the meeting,” Fox News reported.
“Tom Tatem, a Randolph Township father of four who created a petition demanding school board members resign, and James Jacobi, a Randolph Township father of three, told “Fox & Friends” Tuesday that the victory should be a lesson in transparency for towns across America,” said the network.
“It’s not about being the loudest to get your way, it’s really about learning that this needs to be a transparent and accountable and collaborative process with the town that you live in,” Jacobi said. “And that’s one of the biggest messages we were giving the board last night, consistently across 40 different speakers. And that’s what they really need to come and think about.”
“They got the message,” Tatem said. “They reversed course on their decision, which is very much appreciated.”
The meeting quickly became chaotic, with the board sustaining “a nearly four-hour onslaught of boos, jeers, calls for their resignation and about 50 speakers during the public session. The overwhelming majority of speakers accused the board of bringing what they called ‘woke’ and ‘cancel culture’ actions into their school system,” USA Today reported.
“The few who spoke in defense of the board and reviewing the calendar were shouted down by the approximately 400 people who filled Randolph Middle School for the special meeting,” said the paper. “Security guards and Randolph police kept a heavy presence of uniformed officers inside and outside the building. … A recess was called at one point to help police calm the crowd, but even then, individual arguments broke out, including one in which a board supporter was cursed at by another woman.”
In an effort to be more politically correct, the school board this month began listing holidays, including religious holidays like Easter and Christmas, and national holidays, such as Memorial Day and Thanksgiving, as simply a “day off.” The school calendar was also changed to rename Columbus Day as Indigenous People’s Day, which drew outrage.
Tatem called on school board members and Superintendent Jen Fano to “resign immediately,” saying they “clearly do not have the best interests of our children in anything they do.” A petition he posted drew more than 4,500 signatures.
“Truth be told, they’ve lost the trust of our community and I feel between a mixture of their arrogance and incompetence that they’re not really the best people to proceed forward in helping to rebuild and help our community heal,” Tatem said.
Another attendee said: “We live in a cancel culture and we are very sensitive to that and we don’t want to see that in Randolph,” NJ.com reported.
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