Ankeny parent Andy Brommel delivered a strong three-minute message to the school board last week in which he called on the parents of the district to
He opened by acknowledging that the board members have been put in a “very unfortunate and unfair situation.”
“I think hindsight being what it is, you as well as the members of the community can agree that this was far more than you signed up for or were ever capable of managing,” he said. “So I’m here tonight to do the board a favor and hopefully take this heavy and unfair burden off your shoulders and place it where it belongs — on us, the parents of the school district.”
He then directed his comments to the parents.
“I am here tonight to try and persuade you to do something, because lets be honest, it’s been a year and the only thing this board has demonstrated is reliably capable of doing is outsourcing every decision they make to unelected bureaucrats at the county, state and federal levels. They have proven unwilling or unable to participate in the exercises of critical or independent thinking or to demonstrate any level of intellectual integrity, curiosity or consistency whatsoever. Or God forbid, even entertaining the idea of maybe allowing us, the parents of this community — the ones who elected them to their positions in the first place and to whom they each took an oath to represent, the dignity to make our own informed decisions about what we believe is best for the immediate and long-term mental, physical, spiritual and emotional health of our children.
“So the time is now for each parent to take back the authority that is rightfully ours. You do not need to ask for permission. You do not need to be a doctor or an epidemiologist or public health specialist. You do not need to have any official titles or credentials after your names because when it comes to your child, the only three letters that matter are M-O-M and D-A-D. Those three magic letters made you the subject matter expert and the only person qualified to decide what is best for your child and your child alone.
“If you as a parent think the best thing for your child is to have their mouth and nose obstructed with a bacteria-infested rag for eight hours a day, then you should keep sending your kid to school with a mask on. If you as a parent think the best thing for your child is to not have their mouth and nose obstructed with a bacteria-infested rag for eight hours a day, then you should stop sending your kid to school with a mask on, now.”
Brommel said his daughter transferred to Ankeny Christian Academy after last year.
“If you’re not familiar, ACA is a relatively small K-12 single-building school here in Ankeny just south of Faith Baptist Bible College. We’ve been meeting in person full-time, mask optional for students and teachers, the entire school year. We’ve had winter concerts, plays, parties, field trips and sporting events throughout the year. School has been normal for us. Not new normal, normal normal. And it’s been such a blessing. I have to be honest though, it breaks my heart every day taking them to school, seeing the Ankeny school kids masked up going into the school in the morning, masked up outside at recess, masked up leaving school at the end of the day — I always wonder, how many of these kids would be wearing masks if their parents were given the option. But maybe there aren’t many of them in the minority. But if there’s even one out there listening to this, you are not alone. You are not crazy. You are not heartless. You are a parent and you deserve to do what you feel is best for your child. All of us do. So let’s go.”