NORTHVILLE, Mich. - The president of the Northville School Board is facing calls to resign after he shared posts on social media that downplayed the COVID-19 pandemic.
Over the weekend, Matt Wilk shared a post on his Facebook from an account asking "where are the videos of panic in the hospitals" and said the virus "exists only in falsified statistics shouted on the news without context." The account, called Carpe Donktum, is a pro-Trump Internet personality.
After someone asked about showing the post with the Northville School Board so they could "know what you REALLY think about masks for kids and teachers," he left a comment that drove criticism against him further.
"How about we allow schools to reopen and Grandma can take the extreme precautions? She can wear a spacesuit when she "needs" to go out and shop, and the rest of the world can go about their lives, instead of shutting everything down because she might get sick."
The added commentary only added to the displeasure that parents were vocalizing online. An alumnus of Northville set up an online petition calling for Wilk to resign, garnering more than 4,000 signatures in three days.
Lisa McIntyre, the president of the PTA at Ridge Wood Elementary in Northville, said she was disappointed and shared a post about the importance of leading in the community following the incident.
"I believe integrity and accountability is a huge part of being a community leader, one I don't take lightly. Managing the pandemics we are dealing with right now needs to be handled sensitively so that we can put plans and policies in place that appropriately care for all of the people in our community," she wrote.
Wilk's posts also came days before the school board was planning to discuss how it should reopen the district for the fall school year - a conversation that most educational institutions are having as COVID-19 cases appear to be on the rise again in Michigan.
Not everyone disagreed with Wilk, however. The Northville Republicans Club shared a flier in support of the president. The post asked people to send emails of support to the board and attend the next school board meeting, scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.