August School Board Agenda is out!

The August 16th school board agenda is out and there are a few interesting items. I will outline a few of the items below, with my own thoughts. The agenda can be reviewed on the Dade Schools website. Please look them over and let me know your thoughts in the comments. I have also posted this in the Facebook group, and so we can have an open dialogue there. If you’re not a part of the group, please join us and become a part of the conversation.

C-101: Proposed adoption of school Board policy 9147, Educational Advisory Committee  

This item is the final reading for the Educational Materials Advisory Committee. Basically, the school board is creating a specific committee to review all educational materials and will become Board Policy 9147. Here’s a direct quote from the agenda item:

Board Policy 9147 establishes EMAC, a committee of parents, teachers, students, and community members, that advises the Superintendent on matters related to instructional materials. The EMAC is responsible for promoting parent involvement in the selection of educational materials, promoting parent contributions when stakeholder input is solicited in selecting library materials, educating parents about educational materials and related Board Policies, Florida Statutes, and Florida Administrative Code, and making recommendations for new educational materials.

Now, here’s my take on this. This item was put in place to appease Mom’s for Liberty, and follows the new laws passed by DeSantis to include parent participation in this process. Is it a bad thing? Yes and no. Parents are not educators. They do not have the necessary training to know what kids need to learn, and as we all know, certain parents will find objection to just about anything.

E-106: Request for approval of the tentative board meeting schedule for 2024

The board will be discussing a tentative meeting schedule for the 2024 school year, and it looks like they have taken the start of the school year into consideration next year. They tentatively set the August meeting for the 13th, which is a Tuesday. If the beginning of the school year starts on a Thursday again, as it does this year, that means that it will no longer fall on the day before the first day of school.

What is interesting to see is that they are scheduling dates for “Instructional Materials Public Hearings”, so it looks like the committee they’re forming, as spoken about above in item C-101, will hold public hearings.

G-1: Proposed amendments to school board policies… Weapons… Search and Seizure

This is a legal item set forth by the board lawyer that will cement the board’s rules on Weapons on school grounds and the policies surrounding search and seizures. These are the proposed changes to the language of their current policy, which cements that weapons are not allowed on school grounds, even in private vehicles. This is one of those items where we need to thank the School Board for taking the safety of our kids into consideration.

G-8: Proposed amendments to school board policies… reproductive health and disease education and 2510, instructional materials, school library/media center, and other educational materials

This is the item we spoke on in the June meeting, and we expected back on the agenda now in August. Granted, the Board’s hands are tied by state law, and they cannot break that, but they are specifying that the whole process should be more transparent with this sentence:

Any meetings of committees convened for the purpose of resolving an objection by a parent or resident to specific materials must be noticed and open to the public in accordance with s. 286.011 and must include parents of students who will have access to such materials. 

Also, another thing I don’t like, which is also part of the law, is materials must now be approved by the Florida Department of Education, not the individual districts. This takes away any authority or autonomy to the districts as to what they can teach the kids in their area.

My biggest problem with all of this is the blatant indoctrination. The state is trying to teach our kids their way. The DeSantis administration continually blames the “left” for indoctrinating children, but that is exactly what he is doing here by passing all these laws. Even the PragerU materials that have received so much press as of late, the founder, Dennis Prager, admits the content is indoctrination and thinks it’s not so bad to indoctrinate, so long as it’s his way.

H-6: Menstrual Hygiene Products

I cannot love this item enough! Board Member Ms. Luisa Santos is introducing an item to “make menstrual hygiene products available at each school within the district at no charge in the nurse’s office or other physical school facilities for health services and it school restrooms.” This should have been in place long ago so all the girls in our district can partake in their education without interruption. Not having access to menstrual hygiene products can make that difficult for them and can disrupt their day.

H-13: Explore the Feasibility of offering a remote option for the public participation at school board meetings

The final item of note is to “Explore the feasibility of offering a remote option for public participation at School Board Meetings“. I cannot tell you how HUGE this is! This would encourage parents to partake in the civic process even when they cannot find someone to watch their kids. This has been introduced by Ms. Lucia Baez-Geller, and she states the following:

To encourage participation, increase engagement, and promote transparency, an additional option for remote participation should be offered for School Board meetings and any other public hearings that require public input from constituents. Other local and national municipalities utilize this method for public hearings, including video or voicemail recordings with specific time limits for the record.

Yes! Personally, I can’t attend the August 16th meeting because of meet and greets at my children’s school, so I am going to submit a letter for the record instead. I can understand not being able to participate in a school board meeting because of timing issues, and this would resolve that problem.

Conclusion

Please refer to our School Board Resources page for the forms needed in order to speak and all information you need for the meeting and the members. You can write a letter to submit into the record if you cannot attend the meeting. That’s not as impactful as attending and saying you’re peace, but it’s better than nothing. Just be sure to reach out to your member to be able to do so.

It is very possible I missed something of importance. Please look over the agenda and make sure there is nothing I missed. If there is, let me know in the comments or on social media. Also, if you have any questions and need any assistance, let us know so we can help. Until we can reverse these laws, we need to try to find a way to make the best of it and not allow ONE parent dictate what is in the best interests of all of our children.

2 thoughts on “August School Board Agenda is out!”

  1. There is a misinterpretation here regarding the Instructional Materials hearing in March. It is NOT for the new EMAC that Alonso proposed, but rather the byproduct of all of the work of the district recruited committees that we all recommended that parents apply to join. They will be suggesting textbooks and ancillary materials for adoption, and the Board eill vote..

    This new EMAC committee, which is to meet in February, May and one other time, at a minimum, will function to take the heat off SB members regarding instructing the public about the mechanics of textbook selection. The danger lies in its authority to recommend instructional and library materials to the Superintendent. Here’s where the PragerU content might come up, or, more subtly, the materials proposed by Moms for Libraries that eminate from right wing presses. A weak Superintendent could acquiesce; a stronger Superintendent will smile, nod and move on.

    1. You are right Nancy. I mixed up 9147 with 2510. But with either one of the two, there are avenues for the wrong people to have the ear of the superintendent, and that could be detrimental for our kids.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top