School board member: Letter writer 'tried to make me an example.' Group spreading lies.
Christine Scott has recently started to speak on behalf of a tax-exempt, dark money group called OneWorthington that has anonymously raised and spent untold amounts of money to influence our Worthington Board of Education election.
A complaint has been filed with the Ohio Elections Commission against OneWorthington and Scott, alleging that they are illegally running a Political Action Committee because their primary purpose and spending has been to support or oppose candidates.
MORE: Christine Scott: "Those those who dare to criticize those in power will be targeted"
Scott asserts that a National School Boards Association complaint that references violence against me was an attempt to silence her organization and its supporters.
It was not.
The National School Boards Association references a threatening letter sent to me that includes, in part, “We are coming after you and all members of the Worthington BOE ... You and others need to go Ms. Hudson. The sooner the better — We are going to make all your lives so miserable if you don’t.
“You have become our enemies and you will be removed one way or other [sic].”
That same letter, with my name on it, was sent to neighboring school board presidents and superintendents, including Olentangy, Dublin, Gahanna and Westerville — giving a clear message that I would be made an example.
I appropriately reported this threatening letter to the FBI, as it is a federal crime to send mail threatening someone and it involved multiple jurisdictions.
I did not claim it was sent by OneWorthington or their supporters. In fact, I publicly condemned a recent anonymous threat of violence against one of their endorsed candidates.
During recent Worthington School Board meetings, we have had parents verbally attack board members, refuse to wear mandated masks, use the Nazi salute and disrupt a meeting to the extent it had to be cut short. Scott would have you believe that this harassment is just how parents advocate for their children. It is not.
Most parents, who are equally passionate about their children’s educations, respectfully share their opinions during public comments and engage in civil debate that helps board members better understand diverse perspectives and make better decisions.
For nearly a year, Scott and her OneWorthington organization have posted on Facebook and their website, and now via direct political mailers, disparaging, false and misleading statements about me.
These actions started after the majority of the school board, including me, voted to end the school resource officer program that had been in place for two years in our high schools.
Their response to this vote, as well as recommended health and safety decisions made throughout the pandemic, has focused on undermining confidence in the board. They have leveled accusations without accountability or the transparency that they claim to want.
Up until this month, when OneWorthington filed with the IRS and included Scott’s name and street address, our community did not know who was behind this organization.
I am a passionate advocate for quality public education. I am also an ally for underrepresented students and helped write our district’s diversity, equity and inclusion policy that was unanimously passed by the board this fall.
Valuing science, research and community input, I strive to make decisions that are in the best interest of each student.
Nikki Hudson is a Worthington parent and member of the Worthington Board of Education. Note from Opinion Editor Amelia Robinson: This guest column and one by OneWorthington member Christine Scott was written before the Nov. 2 election. Hudson was re-elected, according to unofficial results.