Salmon Calls For Arizona School Board Association To Disaffiliate From National Group

October 19, 2021

By Corinne Murdock |

Matt Salmon, a Republican gubernatorial candidate and former U.S. Representative for Arizona’s fifth district, asked the Arizona School Board Association (ASBA) to disaffiliate from the National School Board Association (NSBA). His request was prompted by the NSBA’s move against parents protesting and challenging their school boards; the organization asked the Biden Administration in a letter to investigate those parents for “hate group” activity and potential “domestic terrorism.”

Attorney General Merrick Garland complied; he promised that the FBI was on the case.

In his letter to ASBA, Salmon reasoned that ASBA shouldn’t support the NSBA’s attempt to have the Biden Administration intimidate parents by investigating them for domestic terrorism.

“[I]t has become crystal clear to the American people that NSBA’s real problem is with everyday parents who are not okay with what is happening in our classrooms,” wrote Salmon. “The bottom line is that I find NSBA’s antagonistic posturing toward concerned parents to be deeply inappropriate and frankly un-American.”

Salmon also asked the ASBA if they consulted about the NSBA’s letter to President Joe Biden ahead of its submission. If they did, he requested to know if they helped edit it.

“I am proud to stand with each and every parent who cares enough to get into this fight for a brighter future, and I hope that efforts will be made by ASBA to reaffirm support for civic engagement in local school board meetings, which cannot be properly achieved until you sever your partnership with NSBA and the poor judgment of its leaders,” concluded Salmon.

Salmon told ASBA that they wouldn’t be leading the pack when it came to withdrawing from the NSBA, noting that Pennsylvania did so last week. He also cited how both Louisiana and Florida’s state chapters condemned the NSBA’s letter.

“TODAY I wrote a letter urging @AzSBA to take immediate steps to withdraw its affiliation with @NSBAPublicEd,” wrote Salmon. “By attempting to intimidate concerned parents, NSBA has disqualified itself from enjoying the benefits of a formal relationship with Arizona.”

ASBA is no longer the only option for school board members. Last week, a coalition of Arizonans launched an alternative to ASBA: the Arizona Coalition of School Board Members (ACSBM). Unlike ASBA, ACSBM offers membership to parents and community members in addition to school board members, and they claim to offer the same caliber of resources and legislative advocacy that ASBA offers currently.

As of press time, ASBA hasn’t issued a public response to Salmon’s letter.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

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