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A Message from CVUSD Regarding the Tuesday, March 24th Board of Education Meeting

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Dear CVUSD Community:


In compliance with the current “stay at home” order, the Board of Education for Conejo Valley Unified School District planned to practice safe social distancing, and conduct its Tuesday, March 24
th Board of Education Meeting by utilizing Zoom, a remote video conferencing service.  Prior to the Board Meeting officially commencing an unknown individual(s) “zoombombed” the video with vulgar content, and inappropriate comments. The Zoom conference, and subsequent video live stream was terminated by District staff as quickly as possible. A formal investigation into the matter with local law enforcement has begun, and the District is doing all it can to determine who was responsible, and to prevent something like this from occurring again. 


When public officials gather to conduct official business, there is a trust that it is a safe place to meet, respectfully share concerns, and work together for the best interest of the community. This trust was breached by a person, or people, intentionally trying to cause great harm at a time when our entire community is trying to cope with a global health crisis.

In preparation for the scheduled Tuesday, March 24th Board of Education Meeting the District worked in collaboration with the Ventura County Office of Education for information/advice on Zoom procedures. Several mock meetings utilizing Zoom were held Tuesday morning to confirm appropriate settings were in place, and Zoom tutorials and resources were used to clarify functionality and meeting security. In this case, the District’s due diligence did not prevent the zoombombing from occurring, and for that the District deeply apologizes.

The District has taken immediate action both with law enforcement, and through communication with Zoom to better understand how the disruption occurred, and to prevent it from happening in a virtual public meeting again.  We thank the community for their continued patience, and understanding as the District’s Board of Education engages in an unprecedented shift to virtual meetings.

Understandably, we have received some concern from stakeholders about our school site teachers using Zoom to conduct virtual classes. There are clear differences as to how these Zoom teacher hosted meetings will be set-up for children, and a set number of invited participants, versus how the Board of Education Meeting was established for the public, and an unlimited number of participants. However, we are taking immediate action to protect our students with our IT and Instructional Services team providing additional training about the safeguards teachers are to put in place when hosting a meeting.  These best practices for Zoom classroom meetings include:

  • Dissemination of a “Zoom Teacher Settings” tutorial with strategies to “Lock Zoom Meeting” and control who the participants of a meeting are
  • Only share login information with classroom students/families
  • Require attendees to ask permission to share their screen
  • The option to disable “File Transfer”
  • The option to disable “Chat” in a Zoom Meeting

Our teachers, administrators, and district leadership continue to work tirelessly to transition from in-class learning to distance learning.  We encourage the community to continue to check this webpage for a growing list of Resources to support students, families, and staff in successfully engaging with online tools for distance learning.


Sincerely,

Dr. Mark McLaughlin, Superintendent of Schools
 

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