Letter: Failure to accommodate parents with medical exemptions/school extracurricular activities

Clark County resident Michael Jelineo discusses a current situation involving a parent and Vancouver Public Schools

Editor’s note: Opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of ClarkCountyToday.com

The Vancouver Public School District is not allowing certain parents to observe his/her child’s extra curricular activity in person. Originally the first three options available to parents were for Fall/Winter:

Michael Jelineo
Michael Jelineo

● Wear a shield with a drape

● Ask the school/district to video the event

● Coordinate with a school official to have a door opened to the outside gym/room of event where the parent can stand or sit.

Per conservations with other parents in the district: 

“Parent A” was able to watch from an open doorway at the first event only. The second event attended, a small group of seven people, unable to wear masks for medical reasons as defined by their personal care providers, were allowed to sit in a utility closet. During this time it was observed by these seven individuals at least 10 other people in the bleachers sitting, without masks for the duration of the event, absent of social distancing guidelines.

After inquiry to the middle schools for further explanation of the discrepancy or lack of requested accommodations in light of the above observances, these inquiries have gone unanswered. An update to the rules is that no accommodations for parents will be allowed, please do not show up to school events without wearing a mask. 

The concern is that the rules are not enforced and appear to be along the lines of “rules for thee, and not for me.” These practices, which have been photographed as evidence, are discriminatory in nature. These actions tend to breed mistrust and divisions among the community/parents and the school district. Either these rules will be universally enforced or not at all.

Michael Jelineo
Clark County resident and concerned parent

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