MISSION: TO SERVE EVERY STUDENT WITH EXCELLENCE AS THE STANDARD
Educational Services Facility
10:00 a.m.

 

ADDRESSING THE BOARD:
During this emergency meeting the public will be allowed into the board meeting room beginning at 9:15 a.m. Audience members will be able to sign up to speak during public comment with comments limited to one minute per speaker.  Please be advised that only comments pertaining to face covering requirements will be heard during the emergency meeting.

August 30, 2021 Emergency School Board Meeting

An emergency meeting was called to discuss an emergency policy to require face mask requirements on Monday, August 30, 2021. beginning at 10:00 a.m. in the board room at ESF.  Notice of the meeting was advertised on the District website, social media avenues, a press release and went out on local news channels and newspapers. An agenda was placed on the district website on Sunday, August 29, 2021.  The meeting was streamed live.

A. Meeting Beginning
1. Call to Order

Chairman Belford called the meeting or order at: 10:00 a.m. She explained that the emergency meeting was called in order to address the extremely high number of COVID cases and quarantines within Brevard Public Schools. The only issue on the agenda was an emergency face mask requirement.  She let the audience know of the ettiquette expected in the meeting and of the possible consequences of disrupting or interfering with the lawful administration or functions of the school board or to advise, counsel or instruct any pupil of school employee to disrupt any school or school board function of activity on school board property. 

2. Roll Call

Members Present:  Misty Belford, Cheryl McDougall, Jennifer Jenkins, Matt Susin and Kayte Campbell

3. Pledge of Allegiance

Chairman Belford led the Pledge of Allegiance.

4. Adoption of Agenda
Motion
Adopt the August 30, 2021 Emergency School Board Meeting agenda.
Vote Results ( Approved )
Motion: JenniferD Jenkins
Second: Cheryl Mcdougall
Misty Belford - Aye
Katye Campbell - Aye
JenniferD Jenkins - Aye
Cheryl Mcdougall - Aye
Matthew Susin - Nay
5. Public Comment

The community was provided opportunity to address the topic of face masks and were given a one-minute time limit.  Participants and audience members were reminded of the decorum expected while in the public meeting.  

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A recess was called at 11:13 a.m. and reconvened at 11:29 a.m. and another one was called at 12:31p.m. and reconvened at 12:47 p.m.

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Speakers in Order of Attendance:

  1. Thomas Jefferson
  1. David Kearns
  1. Magi Kyle
  1. Julie Kelligren
  1. Jonathan Schuman
  1. Aisha Hosey
  1. Pamela Castellana
  1. Kathleen Marler
  1. Ricky Marler
  1. Michelle Barrineau
  1. Daniel Espinsosa
  1. Connie Rooke
  1. Susan Pinsky
  1. Melissa Defrancesco
  1. Jana Schmidt
  1. Sal Martingano
  1. Mike Schmidt
  1. Marie Rogerson
  1. Pamela Lesch
  1. Joanne Young
  1. Saoirse Takacs
  1. Michelle Beavers
  1. Tanya Beavers
  1. Ashley Hall
  1. Jody Hand
  1. Jennifer Dunn
  1. Isabelle Regan
  1. Maren Caldwell
  1. Dee Boyles
  1. Robin Davis
  1. George Horvath
  1. Karen Clark
  1. Mia Hosey
  1. Shannon Marsch
  1. Stephenie Anderson
  1. Theresa Lube
  1. Ryan Schlip
  1. Pamela Pedlow
  1. Karen Colby
  1. Jennifer Strafford
  1. Sharon Barone
  1. Cheryl Wojciechowski
  1. Sara Chiavario
  1. Lashon Taylor
  1. Christina Keshischian
  1. Katherine Hamilton
  1. Michael Nobis
  1. Jerry Kunert
  1. Marie Lewis
  1. Erin Dunne
  1. Christie Shelley
  1. Mariah Thomas
  1. Brittany Hencken
  1. Jessica Bellinger
  1. Stephanie Branham
  1. Grace Keller
  1. Alyssa Bobbett
  1. Austin Bell
  1. Elise Strobel
  1. June Townsend
  1. Nada Waldrop
  1. Barbara Schoolfield
  1. Alysia Smith
  1. Lisa Rohacs
  1. Michel McCarthy
  1. Kaeleena O’Connor
  1. Jennifer Thayer
  1. Dayna Richardson
  1. Ryan Tinch
  1. Lexi Delaney
  1. Susan Richards
  1. Julia Anton
  1. Michael Stone
  1. Krista Lukens
  1. Greg H
  1. Erin Davison
  1. Michelle Martin
  1. Laura Jean Dailey
  1. Todd Adams
  1. Dominque Nichels
  1. Julie O’Neill
  1. Matthew Dawley
  1. Ashton Gelzinis
  1. Gerard Graff
  1. Joel Tooley
  1. Carlye Smith
  1. Dakota Pharr
  1. Terri Harte
  1. Emily Lendersdorfer
  1. Gina Lindhorst
  1. Jennifer Lenderman
  1. Mary Hillberg
  1. Lori Williams
  1. Heather Schmidt
  1. Jessica Lapetina
  1. Wyatt Stumbo
  1. Scott Sevel
  1. Casey Taksa
  1. Molly Marder
  1. Skip Parrish
  1. Lindsey Blair
  1. Angela Wilkerson
  1. Kimberly Kroflich
  1. Scott LeBoeuf
  1. Alyssa Hullinger
  1. Chris Bird
  1. Jade Zalewski
  1. Ashley Reninger
  1. Patti Simms
  1. Nathan Wolfe
  1. Richard Mariana
  1. Amber Johnson
  1. Lynn DeCoulaz
  1. Carol Vyhonsky
  1. Matthew Andersen
  1. Brenda Andersen
  1. Shelby Joslin-Boote
  1. Paul Strauss
  1. Elisa Meyer
  1. Shannon Daleiden
  1. Kim Wood
  1. Mary Wallace
  1. Grace Sumner
  1. Gordon Sumner
  1. Taylor Sumner
  1. Peter Fusscas
  1. Sara Wagner
  1. Ashley Black
  1. Crystal Kazy
  1. Mridula Sherin
  1. Jeff Sherin

 

  1. John Glaser
  1. Christine Applegate

 

B. Action
6. Emergency Face Covering Requirement
Emergency Policy - 8-27-21- for 8-30 mtg 2.pdf
BPS COVID Dashboard.pdf
BPS Daily Quarantines.pdf
CDC COVID Tracker.pdf
Health First Hospitalizations.pdf
Parrish COVID-19 Hospitalizations.pdf

Before discussion began on the emergency mask mandate, Mr. Susin asked for a moment of silence for the victims of Hurricane Ida.

 

The emergency meeting was called to address the extremely high number of COVID cases and quarantines within Brevard Public Schools.  Chairman Belford explained that the Board will be considering a face mask requirement as a mitigation strategy. She also explained that the attached Emergency Policy could be amended.  Extensive discussion ensued, 

 

Ms. McDougall has always been a proponent of keeping students in school and keeping them safe.  She is following the mitigation strategies and it seems like the Department of Health had no option but to follow what the Governor had stated; however, prior to the Governor's, it was clear that mitigation strategies that the Department Health was promoting were hand washing, cleaning of surfaces, social distancing and wearing of masks.  She stated that it is not a "be all" remedy, but it it may help keep students in school. Ms. McDougall said that according to CDC guidelines, if students are properly masked, it may help curb quarantines. 

 

Ms. Jenkins said that she wanted to make it clear that while she asked for the emergency meeting, but did not schedule the meeting.  She would have had it on a Saturday or Sunday so that more people could be present if it were up to her. She said that there are staff currently ill with COVID, some on ventilators and so far two staff members have died from COVID this school year.  There is also a student who is currently ventilated from COVID.  She provided data on active and quarantined cases. She stated that we have students suffering trauma because parents are sick; some of whom may not make it. She cannot stay silent.  This is not political for her, and she will be on the right side of history.  She absolutely supports this mandate.

 

Ms. Campbell has some concerns about implementing something before the Judge actually signs the ruling. She does not want to go back and forth.  Ms. Campbell would like for the Board to consider a few things on the draft of the emergency policy:

  • Parental opt-out

  • Short timeframe (maximum of 30 days)

  • Make it busses only

  • Adults only

  • Include Prek-2 grade exemption

  • Change quarantine procedures to align with CDC guidelines if students within 3 to 6 feet  are both wearing properly fitting masks. 

 

Ms. Campbell shared some data from some other states that have statewide mask mandates. She said that there is no way that they can guarantee that students and staff will not be exposed to the virus with or without a mask mandate. The only way to guarantee to stop the spread in schools is to close schools. She said that the Board's constituents are divided. 

 

Mr. Susin said that cases and quarantines from staff and students are going down. He said that this is an illegal motion for policy right now. He said he had items to be placed into the minutes. 

  • Daily Quarantine List (August 30, 2021)

    • Cases went down in both employees and students

  • Parrish Medical

    • From August 24-29, hospitalizations went down more consistently

    • ICU and ventilator cases remain the same (because those last longer)

  • Health First Facebook page

    • Five days of hospitalizations coming down

  • CDC COVID Data Tracker

    • Up to date

    • Testing positivity is going down

    • Hospitalizations down

    • ICU beds stay the same

    • Brevard County is #40 out of 67  in cases

Additionally, Mr. Susin stated:

  • Majority of staff and students do not wear masks. How do we expect them to enforce a mask mandate and exemptions?

  • Issues with policy

    • Judge Cooper quoted that the CDC is the pre-eminent authority....Mr. Susin stated they are not the authority; the CDC can recommend. The CDC is not consistent.  They are not a governing Board. He stated that we should be following the Governor's DOH rules rather than the CDC recommendations which have already been struck down in the Supreme Court.

    • He stated that we are creating a mask mandate that is ineffective and impossible to enforce.

  • He does not feel they are practicing good governance.

    • Mr. Susin asked General Counsel Gibbs questions about when Judge Cooper's judgement becomes law.  Mr. Gibbs explained it is when he signs the order and at the time of the meeting, the order was not signed.

    • Mr. Susin asked if they are going against the DOH rule if the order is not signed to which Mr. Gibbs responded yes.

    • Mr. Susin said that it is irresponsible to put a policy in place when it could be a "see saw."

    • He cannot support the policy.

Chairman Belford said that they are in a crisis in both the schools and community.  She wanted to align the conversation to the following points:

  • Business Continuity

  • Operational Sustainability

  • Economic Impact

  • Critical Mission Interruption 

  • Health and Safety

 

Chairman Belford shared some data that had not been directly discussed. The week before school started, the county positivity per 100,000 was at 627.6.  Our "in the district case count" was 221 per 100,000. The week that schools started the county positivity rate per 100,000 was 710.7 and district cases per 100,000 were at 789. The second week of school, the county rate was 744 positive cases per 100,000 and the district rate was 1,275 per 100,000. Last week (the 3rd week of school) the county rate was 735.9 per 100,000 and the district rate was 1,980 per 100,000. She said that our schools are now significantly impacting our community. There is no doubt we are seeing spread in our schools which we did not see last year. Our health care system is struggling and we are contributing to that struggle. Last week there were 4,498 new cases in the entire county, between 8/20 and 8/26. Out of those, 1,410 came from our schools which is 31% of the cases; with our school population making up just 11% of the county population.. 

 

Ms. Belford outlined the effect this has on our economy and well being.  She said that the Florida DOH shows a statewide decline in every age group except for ages 12-19 where they are steadily growing across the state.  She said that we are not only experiencing a physical crisis, but a mental health crisis as a result of the situation.  She said that we have a very serious crisis on our hands and a very small window to do something to provide some relief. She knows that masks are not the "silver bullet," but what we are currently doing is not working. 

 

Before amending the policy, Mr. Campbell asked if there was consensus on moving forward with her requests.

  • Consideration of a parent opt-out (no consensus)

  • Mask mandate on busses only (no consensus)

  • Mask mandate for adults only (no consensus)

  • PreK-2nd grade mask exemption (no consensus)

  • PreK mask exemption (no consensus)

  • Maximum of 30 days (consensus to approve)

Motion
Approve the Emergency K-12 Face Covering Requirement.
Vote Results ( Approved )
Motion: Cheryl Mcdougall
Second: JenniferD Jenkins
Misty Belford - Aye
Katye Campbell - Nay
JenniferD Jenkins - Aye
Cheryl Mcdougall - Aye
Matthew Susin - Nay
Motion
Approve the amendment to the Emergency K-12 Face Covering Requirement Policy as presented to change the first sentence in Section I to read "Subject to the exceptions set forth below, each student (Pre-k-12) , employee, visitor, vendor, or other person is required to wear a face covering at all times, while indoors on school district property, including District transportation; removing the second sentence. Amend the motion to Change Section 5 to remain in effect for up to 30 days instead of 90 days.
Ms. Campbell made a friendly amendment to the amended motion regarding the change in section five from 90 to 30 days.
Vote Results ( Approved )
Motion: JenniferD Jenkins
Second: Cheryl Mcdougall
Misty Belford - Aye
Katye Campbell - Aye
JenniferD Jenkins - Aye
Cheryl Mcdougall - Aye
Matthew Susin - Nay
C. Board Discussion
7. Board Discussion
emergency-policy-8-27-21-for-8-30-mtg-2.pdf
D. Adjournment
8. Adjournment

Chairman Belford adjourned the emergency meeting at: 2:49 p.m.

For further details about this meeting, please visit the published video found at: www.brevardschools.org

Chairman: ___________________________ Secretary: ___________________________

NSTITUTION:  ARTICLE IX - SECTION 1.  Public education. - The education of children is a fundamental value of the people of the State of Florida. It is, therefore, a paramount duty of the state to make adequate provision for the education of all children residing within its borders. Adequate provision shall be made by law for a uniform, efficient, safe, secure, and high quality system of free public schools that allows students to obtain a high quality education and for the establishment, maintenance, and operation of institutions of higher learning and other public education programs that the needs of the people may require.

 

NOTE:  If a person decides to appeal any decision made by the Board with regard to any matter considered at this meeting, he/she will need a record of the proceedings and, for such purposes, may need to ensure that a verbatim record of the proceedings is made and that the record includes the testimony and evidence upon which the appeal is to be based.

NOTE:  Sensory and mobility impaired persons seeking assistance for participation in any meeting, conference, or seminar should contact Tina Snyder, Manager, Professional Standards. Ms. Snyder may be reached at 321-631-1000, ext. 11226 (voice) or snyder.tina@brevardschools.org (email).

NOTE:  We respectfully request that ALL ELECTRONIC ITEMS AND CELL PHONES REMAIN OFF while the School Board is in session.

NOTE:  Brevard Public Schools Television (BPS-TV) will broadcast this meeting live on Spectrum cable channel 496.  BPS-TV will replay the meeting Sunday, Monday, Thursday and Friday at 12:30 p.m.,Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.  and Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Board meetings are also available as streaming video on the district web page at www.brevardschools.org.   

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