Proponents of attorney Joey Gilbert’s plan to sue the Washoe County School District have been hanging around near schools, handing out flyers to children to take home to their guardians.
Washoe County School District officials said the information on the fliers is false.
A copy of the flyer was sent to This Is Reno. Its title asks, “Why Are More and More Parents Taking Their Children Out of WCSD Schools?”
The flyer alleges “65-85% of WCSD’s 4th and 8th graders test ‘functionally illiterate’ on national tests” and that 90% of high school seniors “lack the skills to qualify for even basic college classes; their diplomas are worthless!”
It also alleges that children are being “taught perverse sexual education,” something This Is Reno has confirmed with the district is not happening.
The flyer repeats allegations that have been made repeatedly by a raucous crowd of public commenters at recent school board of trustees meetings, including that students are being taught “curriculum that is inaccurate, politicized, racist, anti-White, anti-law enforcement, anti-democracy, and anti-American.”
“Student assaults on teachers and on-campus drug/alcohol abuse – IN CLASS – are out of control,” the flyer claims.
Superintendent Kristen McNeill and the board of trustees have been accused by Gilbert and his followers of lying by denying the allegations. The school district, however, maintains that they are false.
Gilbert says he’s going to pursue legal action against the district free of charge but is asking people to donate to a “The People’s Champ” political action committee to help defray legal and clerical costs.
WCSD spokespersons said all of Gilbert’s allegations are false and that the district is aware of adults waiting just off school property to hand the flyer out to children.
“We are aware of individuals circulating a flyer containing inaccurate and false information outside several of our schools,” district spokesperson Vickie Campbell said. “Though people have the right to their own opinions and to share information, whether true or false, they must do so off of school property.”
“They are not allowed to interfere with or impede access to a school campus, nor are they allowed to harass students, families, or district staff.”
Gilbert also threatened to sue the WCSD in a letter dated June 9, accusing the district of forcing bus drivers to work three days with no pay. In the letter, he states that no bus drivers had yet retained his services, but he was prepared to take the case.
Gilbert is a pandemic denier and anti-masker. His social media posts have been flagged as false and misleading.
One of two men was arrested for allegedly causing the cancellation of a recent Douglas County School Board meeting. He allegedly threatened to bring “his militia” to the board meeting to complain about mask mandates and said he was “willing to risk everything to be heard” in court. He is quoted in the Record Courier saying he had been encouraged by Gilbert to yell at district employees.
Gilbert was also present at the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 riot that attempted to stop the certification of electoral votes from the 2020 presidential election. He was identified by so-called “capitol hunters” on Twitter as #purplemeathead in a variety of video stills and photographs shared online. He said he did not enter the Capitol that day.
He did, however, describe the crowd at the Capitol as “one of the most beautiful things” he’s ever seen.
Jeri Chadwell came to Reno from rural Nevada in 2004 to study anthropology at the University of Nevada, Reno. In 2012, she returned to the university for a master’s degree in journalism. She is the former associate and news editor of the Reno News & Review and is a recipient of first-place Nevada Press Association awards for investigative and business reporting. Jeri is passionate about Nevada’s history, politics and communities.