Once considered tame, even boring, school board meetings have become culture-war battlegrounds in recent years. On dozens of occasions, tensions have escalated into not just shouting matches and threats but also arrests and criminal charges.
In the first wide-ranging analysis of school board unrest, ProPublica found nearly 60 incidents that led to arrests or criminal charges. Almost all were in suburban districts, and nearly every participant was white.
How Parents Outraged by Library Books, Diversity Initiatives and Sex Ed Transformed One New Jersey School Board
An angry parent confronted a New Jersey school board president, accelerating a chain of events that pushed the board to the right.
He Became Convinced the School Board Was Pushing “Transgender Bullshit.” He Ended Up Arrested — and Emboldened.
Eric Jensen, a parent in North Carolina, had grievances to air about library books “trying to convert kids to gay,” and about mask and vaccine mandates. So he joined an activist group and headed to a school board meeting.
College students arrested. A parking lot altercation. A retired teacher waking up to a broken window. Events at a school district in Conway, Arkansas, illustrate the alarming trend of unrest at school board meetings across the country.