The Hudson School District Board of Education voted 6-1 on Tuesday night to alter and approve multiple policy revision recommendations that caused a stir at last month's meeting. Board member Sandy Gehrke cast the dissenting vote.
In October, attorney Mick Waldspurger recommended controversial revisions to multiple school board policies. The board tabled the matter until Nov. 7, when a committee of the whole reviewed the policies and procedures, and thought it had come to a consensus.
"I did agree at that time to support these changes, because many of the things that I thought were the most egregious items were removed," Gehrke said of the Nov. 7 meeting. "But when I received the final copy and I read them through again, I reconsidered my position."
The most significant portions of Waldspurger's recommendations that were altered during the work session included a portion of Policy 7600 that would have barred board members from attending meetings of board committees that they were not a part of and a portion of Policy 7600 that would have banned public demonstrations at or outside district property when board meetings were held.
Last month on the day of the board meeting, Gehrke issued a press release to speak out about Waldspurger's proposed changes saying some would "result in the gagging of its board members," "forbid board members from expressing any disagreement with decisions of a board majority on any issue" and "threaten any dissident board member with removal."
Gehrke also objected to the revisions to Policy 7200 and Procedure 7200.1 at Tuesday's meeting and had them pulled from the consent agenda to be discussed and voted on by roll call vote. The items were approved on a 6-1 vote with Gehrke dissenting.
The following policies and procedures were addressed at Tuesday's meeting (full text and revisions available in attached PDFs):
- Policy 1125: Public Suggestions and Complaints
- Policy 1230: Loitering or Causing Disturbance
- Procedure 1310.1: Complaints: School Personnel
- Policy 2300: Board-Staff Communications
- Policy 7200: Board of Education Policy Responsibility
- Procedure 7200.1: Policy Development, Revision Adoption, and Dissemination
- Policy 7600: School Board Meetings
- Policy 7601: Board Use of Electronic Mail
- Policy 7800: School Board Expectations and Ethics