NSBA apologizes for equating parent anger at school board meetings with ‘domestic terrorism’

Nearly 20 state school board associations have severed ties with the NSBA or disavowed its letter.

Parents and community members gather for a school board meeting in Sartell to protest the district's partnership with Equity Alliance Minnesota.

The National School Boards Association (NSBA) has apologized for its characterization of angry parents at school board meetings in a Sept. 29 letter to President Joe Biden.

NSBA’s letter drew attention to an alleged increase in “acts of malice, violence, and threats against public school officials,” calling them a possible “equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”

In response to that letter, Attorney General Merrick Garland called on the FBI to “use its authority” against these threats, a move that elicited widespread conservative outrage.

“On behalf of the NSBA, we regret and apologize for the letter. There was no justification for some of the language included in the letter,” the NSBA Board of Directors wrote in a memo to state school board associations, according to The Washington Times.

“We should have had a better process in place to allow for consultation on a communication of this significance. We apologize also for the strain and stress this situation has caused you and your organizations.”

The Washington Times reported last week that nearly 20 state school board associations have severed ties with the NSBA or disavowed its letter. At the time the organization sent the letter to the president, the NSBA represented 47 state school board associations.

“No school board member or administrator should ever be the subject of threats or violence … However, attempting to solve the problems with a call for federal intervention is not the place to begin, nor a model for promoting greater civility and respect for the democratic process,” the Pennsylvania School Boards Association wrote in a statement announcing its departure from the NSBA.

The Ohio School Boards Association, which said it will reevaluate its membership with the NSBA next month, made a statement disavowing “many aspects” of the NSBA letter and announcing it has “made [its] dissatisfaction known to the NSBA governing board and staff.”

Alpha News previously covered Attorney General Garland’s memo to the FBI and the content of the NSBA letter itself. The letter cited various “threats” that, upon closer examination, turned out to be not much more than angry parents venting their anger in the vast majority of cases.

School board meetings across the country have turned disruptive and contentious this year because some parents strongly object to continued mask mandates and a heavy dose of leftist identity politics in school curricula.


Evan Stambaugh

Evan Stambaugh is a freelance writer who had previously been a sports blogger. He has a BA in theology and an MA in philosophy.