NSBA Biden Administration lawfare investigation


Independent Review Findings 

The review revealed the following:

  • The September 2021 letter was “principally directed, reviewed, and approved by” NSBA’s former Interim Director and CEO Chip Slaven, who was responsible for both the “origin and substance of the letter.”
  • Other than review by four Board Officers, the letter was not widely reviewed or approved within the organization, and the finalized letter was not disclosed to the full NSBA Board of Directors or NSBA members until after it was submitted. 
  • The review points to collaboration between Mr. Slaven and the White House, but “did not find direct or indirect evidence suggesting the Administration requested the letter.”

“The letter directly contradicts our core commitments to parent engagement, local control, and nonpartisanship,” said NSBA Executive Director & CEO John Heim. “The sentiments shared in the letter do not represent the views or position of the NSBA. The NSBA does not seek or advocate for federal law enforcement intervention at local school board meetings.”

“Sending the letter without full Board approval highlighted a concerning lack of internal process and accountability and harmed the mission of our organization,” added Dr. Heim. “While the events as recounted in the review are unfortunate, there are a number of important takeaways that will help our organization as we move forward.”

“As you saw in the report, a draft of the letter was shared with the Board Officers,” shared NSBA Board President Frank S. Henderson, Jr. “We regret that we did not review the letter more closely at the time. We apologized in 2021 and acknowledged that the letter should have never been sent—the sentiments shared do not represent the Board’s views or the views of the NSBA. We are focused now on implementing processes to ensure this does not happen again.”

Parents Defending Education emailed 47 state school board associations for comment on the NSBA’s Sept. 29, 2021, letter (Hawaii and Washington DC are not members of NSBA, and Virginia & Louisiana had already made public statements). We asked all organizations the following questions: