MCCLELLAN PARK, Calif. (KTXL) – Two school board members in the Twin Rivers Unified School District (TRUSD) had their property vandalized last week and one of the vandals left a note calling for an end to distance learning.
Board Vice President Michael Baker, who has served on the school board since 2012, said he’s dealt with a lot of angry parents over the years, but not until now has that anger turned into action.
“Around maybe 9:00, the neighbor called and said, ‘Hey, are you aware that your car window is busted out?’ And I, of course, jumped up, went outside, there was glass all in the street, glass in the car,” Baker told NewsNation affiliate KTXL.
The Jeep in his driveway had been vandalized with a note left on the seat of his car with this misspelled message: “bringg kids bacc.”
“I understand what was done to my house, but I’m not going to play victim. I’m not going to get scared,” Baker said.
Baker, who has two kids of his own in the district, appeared Tuesday night at his first board meeting since the incident.
He said he understands the frustration parents have over school closures but feels the blame is misplaced.
“The board is not the target,” Baker said. “Everybody wants to come back, but we need to do it when it’s safe.”
Baker’s property wasn’t the only one damaged last week. Baker said on the same night his Jeep was damaged, vandals also stopped in Rio Linda at the home of fellow board member Bob Bastian.
Alexandra Gwiazdowski has four kids in the school district and is not happy that schools remain closed, but she said the school board isn’t at fault.
“It made me completely sick to my stomach that that happened since it was not deserved,” Gwiazdowski said.
She said a year of distance learning has taken a toll on her kids, and the majority of the parents she knows want students back in school.
“I’m tired and my kids are suffering in regards to their social atmosphere completely stripped from them. It’s wearing on them,” Gwiazdowski said.
Baker shares the concern and said with more teachers getting their COVID-19 vaccine, he’s hopeful that a classroom return is just around the corner.
“It’s a road. It’s a pandemic. But for the first time, there’s actually a lot of light at the end of the tunnel. Not a little, but there’s a lot of light at the end of the tunnel. Just be patient. We’ll get there,” he said.
Both the TRUSD Police Department and Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office were notified about the incident. The school board will hold a meeting to discuss reopening schools on March 3.