A group of Loudoun residents seeking to recall six of the nine School Board members said Wednesday they have filed a petition with the Loudoun County Circuit Court to have board member Beth Barts (Leesburg District) removed from office, according to a press release.
Ian Prior, executive director of Fight for Schools, the organization behind the effort, said the group had collected 1,860 signatures from Leesburg residents calling for Barts’ removal.
Prior stated that the reasons behind the effort to remove Barts include neglect of duty, misuse of office, and incompetence in the performance of her duties.
Bart’s activities, he said, are “so far beyond the pale of what is accepted of an elected official in this country.”
In addition to Barts, the School Board members being targeted include Chairwoman Brenda Sheridan (Sterling District), Vice Chairwoman Atoosa Reaser (Algonkian District), Denise Corbo (At-Large), Leslee King (Broad Run District) and Ian Serotkin (Blue Ridge District).
The recall effort began in March after Fight for Schools found the six board members had joined a private Facebook group called “Anti-Racist Parents of Loudoun County.” A member of that group allegedly called for other members to “infiltrate” another anti-CRT parent group, Parents Against Critical Theory (P.A.C.T.), through potentially illicit means.
After a four month investigation the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office determined that social media posts in the private Facebook group did not constitute criminal action.
Petitions to remove an official from elected office must be signed by people from a given official’s jurisdiction equal to 10% of that office’s voter count in the last election, according to the Code of Virginia.
Charlie King, the attorney representing Barts, told the Times-Mirror the allegations made in the petition against Barts are not true.
“I predict all of these “recalls,” whether for Commonwealth’s Attorney or School Board, in Loudoun or Fairfax, will be dismissed before trial. What’s unknown is who the players are going to be? Will the Commonwealth’s Attorney or the Loudoun Judges recuse themselves? If so, getting replacements may take weeks,” King said.