Tension and a want for answers was felt at the latest public session meeting for Clovis Unified held on October 6th with the biggest elephant in the room. Parents were not happy with the mandate for students to be vaccinated and they made sure to show it.
On October 1st, California Governor Gavin Newsom passed the law mandating that all students and school staff must be vaccinated. The mandate is to be effective at the start of the school term once the FDA approves the Covid-19 vaccine for students.
When the public was given the opportunity to speak, they made sure the board members understood what their feelings were about this mandate. Clovis resident Tim Holtz made sure he expressed what everyone in the public’s message to the governor was.
“I’m not going to ask you to go on the record right now, but I do ask you to go on the record by sending a letter to the governor telling him that we are not going to allow our children or mandate our children to get this shot in order to go to school,” Holtz said. “There’s been more kids dying of car accidents. We’re not telling kids to stop getting into cars. We’re over it it’s 2021 already and we’re like in day 600 of the 15 day slow the spread right? Come on.”
More parents had messages of their own about this subject and all were in agreement that this mandate was unacceptable to them and not something they will agree with. Parent Curtis Willy emphasized this while expressing his issue that the Clovis Unified board has not taken the public’s opinion into account.
“Our superintendent started her report with the discussion of curiosity and science. The general feeling of parents here have been receiving with everyone here [board members] is an absolute disregard for our curiosity and questions regarding forcing masks and vaccines on our young children,” Willy said. “Are we experts? No, we’re not experts. Are we medical professionals? No, we’re not medical professionals. Are we parents? Yes we’re parents.”
To ensure that the public understands that their voices are heard, the board responded to the public with comments of assurance that they will take into account what they’ve heard. Board member Steven Fogg assured people in attendance that Clovis Unified understands their concerns.
“This is frustrating, and I get it, but we’re moving forward and let me assure you I can speak for myself and the other board members I’ve talked to, we’re not taking this idly at all,” Fogg said. “We may not be out there talking to every news agency, but there’s some things you have to do and with a little bit of politics and a little finesse you can make it happen. We want to make this work. We want to make this successful.”
To hear the entire hearing and other public speakers, you can view the video on the Clovis Unified YouTube page.