JCTA Officer Email Exchange

Brent McKim has JCTA staff send an email to all members asking them to complete a survey about the mandatory mask requirement.

On Thursday, August 4, 2022, around 7 PM, JCTA President Brent McKim sends the preliminary results from the survey to the “authenticated JCTA Board” and carbon copies the UniServ Directors. The results had been forwarded to him around noon earlier that day by one of the UniServ Directors, Chanda Hornback.

Several officers tell me that the first they learned that a survey was being sent by JCTA to the nearly 6,000 teacher members was when they received it in their email inbox. They also shared concerns that the survey was politically motivated in order to overturn the Board’s uninamous vote to support mask mandates while the community is in the red, which was first passed at the March 8, 2022 Board Meeting and renewed as part of the district’s reopening plan on July 19, 2022.

The next day, a JCTA Officer who is a Black female special education teacher, sent a reply email expressing her concerns with how the survey was conducted, how it was able to be taken more than once by several who tested it, and how it was shared in a group that has ties to the same groups that have been causing disruptions at board meetings, not only in Jefferson County, but across the state and country. Some of the protesters have been seen holding signage representing white nationalist hate groups, promoting “stop the steal” propaganda, and one of their members is a leader in the local Tea Party who recently organized a petition that attempted to put the badly needed tax increase at risk. She encouraged Brent McKim to discontinue using this survey method in the future and encouraged a conversation with other JCTA Board members before sending a second email, asking even more of their members who are busy trying to prepare for the school year. The group who organized the anti-mask protest outside of VanHoose on August 2 represents a group with “Stop the Steal” on their website, and whose national organization is listed on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s website as a designated hate group. The timing of the survey would indicate that it was done in an attempt to place the existing mandatory masking policy in jeopardy. There would be no other reason to survey the members. Below is what she said:

Presumably within minutes (time stamp indicates this came before, but I believe it is in response to the above email), another JCTA officer, Katie Punsly, responded:

Once again, Brent unilaterally makes a decision to send a “secure survey” to validate the results. Now members will be asked to interrupt their classroom preparation time to complete not one, but two surveys.  Hecompletelydiregardedthe  concernsofthreefemalemembersofhisboard.