How One School District Dealt with the Anger

In an effort to learn how school districts are effectively dealing with the anger surrounding masks, vaccines, CRT and other divisive issues, I recently spoke with one of our Ohio Public School Advocacy Network superintendents who was confronted by several upset parents opposed to the district’s mask mandate.  The superintendent’s response to these parents was to call each of them and listen to their concerns.  Below is an email from one of them:

I just want to say I really appreciate you calling!  I understand where you are coming from, and I know you are in a tough situation as a superintendent.  Everything you said makes complete sense to me and I understand why you’re doing what you’re doing.  If you explain the situation to everyone as you explained it to me, I don’t see how people couldn’t change their minds.  Again, thank you very much!  Have a great day.

When I asked if this email is representative of how many of the parents responded to the personal phone calls, the answer was yes.  The superintendent then added:  “The bottom line is being kind and taking the time to listen to people.  It has been a challenge to be yelled at, threatened, etc. but in the end the opportunity to vent ultimately has led to 100% of the angry parents either supporting our mask mandate or at least understanding why we did it.”

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