unmask kids sign web photo.jpg

An “Unmask Our Kids” sign is pictured in the front yard of a home near Botham Avenue in St. Joseph.

BRIDGMAN — Four more recall petitions were filed Thursday against two Bridgman school board trustees over their support for requiring students and staff to wear face masks during the pandemic.

A clarity hearing on the language of the four petitions will be at 11 a.m. June 15 at the Berrien County Administration Building, 701 Main St., St. Joseph, said Berrien County Clerk Sharon Tyler.

Sawyer resident Alex Ott filed two petitions against Eric Ramso, school board president, and two against Wayne Hall, a school board trustee.

Two of the nearly identical petitions say Ramso and Hall should be recalled because they “voted on 8/16/2021 in favor of a motion that carried 7-0 to approve the ‘2021-2022 Resolution to Grant Emergency Powers to the Superintendent.’”

The other two nearly identical petitions expand on the first one, stating: “The resolution included granting temporary powers to Superintendent (Shane) Peters, and included in Section D, ‘Authority to institute new policies or procedures to implement the local, state and federal orders and/or the Preparedness Plan, including, but not limited to, policies requiring face coverings, imposing mandatory quarantine measures, and limiting access to the school building or educational extracurricular activities.’”

This isn’t the first time Ramso and Hall have faced a possible recall over masks.

In May, recall petitions filed against them by Michelle Staneart-Gast of Bridgman were denied by the Berrien County Election Commission for not being clear and factual.

Ott, who represented Staneart-Gast at the hearing, said that by granting the superintendent emergency powers, the trustees took away the ability of parents to make a decision on whether their children should wear masks.

Ott was not available for comment on his recall petitions.

Staneart-Gast also filed a recall petition against Trustee Nancy Hawley, but withdrew the petition before the May hearing. No reason was given.

Contact: lwrege@TheHP.com, 932-0361, Twitter: @HPWrege

Staff Writer at The Herald-Palladium