I applaud Stephen Moffitt (president) and Sharon Davis (vice president) of the Hopkinton Town Council for performing their due diligence and researching the Chariho School Committee’s policies and procedures as they relate to addressing public comment on school issues. In response to a motion made by Michael Geary and supported by Scott Bill Hirst to send a letter to the superintendent of the Chariho School District opposing school policy on public comments, Mr. Moffitt and Ms. Davis read the official procedures for the record and calmly discussed the false assertions made by Mr. Geary and Mr. Hirst. After it became apparent that the proposed letter was a piece of political grandstanding and exposed Mr. Hirst’s contempt for the School Committee and his personal animus for members of that body, Mr. Geary and Mr. Hirst persisted in pushing their agenda that is not in accordance with the truth of facts.
This is the type of political activism that the Chariho School Committee members have faced this year. What started out as a complaint against revisions to the Library Media Policy morphed into accusing the district of teaching critical race theory, to not being listened to, and today it is all about taxation without representation. The activists use the School Committee’s Open Forum to attack, make baseless claims, complain about wearing masks, and paying taxes; then they leave the meeting en masse without listening to the rest of the meeting agenda. To be fair, a very few complainants stayed at the last meeting to hear the good news about the successes achieved by Chariho students reflected in the U.S. News & World Report rankings. Mr. Hirst and Mr. Geary were notably absent for this agenda item. Staying for the rest of the meeting would have given them an opportunity to publicly share a positive comment.
The attacks on school committees are part of a national movement to promote conservative political agendas. Thrusting schools into the political arena is wrong. Not all issues are political as we have seen in the last few years. I refer to public health, climate change, and the education of our children among these issues. Mr. Hirst sees everything through a political prism. Holding our children hostage to political doctrine is wrong. Fact and truth need to be taught to our children, not political ideologies. Again, I applaud Mr. Moffitt and Ms. Davis for espousing fact and truth.