13 angry citizens signed up to speak at Monday’s Campbell County School Board meeting at Rustburg High School.

Concerns and complaints centered largely on mask requirements in schools, and speaking opportunities at school board meetings, among other issues.

Many conveyed their feelings that mask requirements in schools are unfair, and violate students’ rights. Others called masks ineffective at preventing the spread of COVID-19.

The CDC still currently recommends masks in many situations.

Others also raised concerns about the transparency of the school board. One citizen felt agendas should be posted two weeks before school board meetings.

Others complained about having to sit in a room physically separated from the main school board meeting in the past.

Some also voiced concerns about the Department of Education’s Model Policies for Transgender Students, and Critical Race Theory. 

Once the period for public comment expired, vice chair David Phillips read an official statement from the board.

“This board has not adopted the Department of Education’s model policies for the treatment of transgender students. Nor have they been adopted under the disguise of another policy. We have heard your concerns, and have taken them into consideration when addressing this issue. Our current policies are in compliance. And we can continue, and we plan to continue working with students on an individual basis to meet their specific needs, as we’ve always done.

Regarding critical race theory, I have stated three times that we do not teach it, and nor do we plan to. In regards to mask mandates, we have initially announced that they would be volunteer. However on August 12, the state health commissioner ordered a statewide requirement to wear masks in all K-12 schools. Please note that the Campbell County School Board will comply with Virginia laws.”