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‘Unify and Not Comply’
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2021-12-08

Hofkin advising disgruntled parents to reject UPSD COVID-19 requirements

 

            A member of Upper Perkiomen's School Board claims she is advising parents who object to the district's COVID-19 health and safety plan to reject the rules. On Monday, Raeann Hofkin also said she tells disgruntled mothers and fathers to withdraw their children.

            "When parents complain to me about their child and their education, my advice is to unify and not comply, and pull their children out of the district," Hofkin said during the board's regular meeting.

            The board member announced that she took her own advice. During the board comment portion of the meeting, Hofkin said her son is thriving in a cyber charter prep school.

            "My son is much happier," she said. "My only regret is that I didn't pull him much sooner."

            In a text message received Tuesday afternoon, Hofkin claims she has spoken to approximately 20 parents since the start of the school year who object to the district's masking contact tracing and quarantining policies. During the meeting, four residents explicitly accused the members of discrimination by requiring their unvaccinated children to follow contract tracing and quarantining requirements.

            "I'm the only board member they feel is listening to them," Hofkin wrote in a text message. She claimed that enrollment rolls for the current school year show a drop of  "about 125 students" compared to last year.

            According to a text message, Hokfin pulled her son from the district on Oct. 4 due to its facemask mandate and because he was miserable when he went back to in-person schooling. 

"He said it was like being in prison and didn't like the assigned seats for lunch and wasn't able to socialize with his friends," she wrote. "He was moody, miserable and hated people and school.  He's much happier now and thriving."

            During her comments, Hofkin described the decision by school officials allowing fully vaccinated students to remain in class – despite a potential close contact to a person who has tested positive for the novel coronavirus – as coercion and manipulation.

            "I'm disgusted by everyone who is allowing this to happen," Hokfin said near the end of the meeting.

            In the context of complying with the mask mandate, the member asked the audience "if you ever wondered if you would have been one of the 11 million who boarded the trains in Germany, just look as far as the tip of your nose."

The district, in partnership with Giant Pharmacies, will host a voluntary vaccine clinic for students ages 5-11 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the 4th & 5th Grade Center, located at 510 Jefferson St. in East Greenville. Registered students will receive their first dose on Dec. 14 and their second dose on Jan. 4, 2022.

            In other news, the members voted to appoint three new teachers. They approved the hiring of Kristen Ott as a gym teacher at the high school, Eric Boyer as a long term substitute special education teacher for the high school and the middle school and Danielle Dunn as a temporary learning and emotional support teacher at the 4th & 5th Grade Center. The board also approved a leave of absence for Gloria Hendricks until Feb. 2, 2022.


 

 

 

 

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