- The Washington Times - Monday, March 6, 2017

A leftist, propagandist anti-Trump strike has shut down the public school system in Alexandria, Virginia, because many of its teachers requested the day off to protest.

More than 300 teachers requested Wednesday off, and according to the school’s superintendent Alvin Crawley, the “unusually high number” of call-outs may be connected with the “Day without a Women,” nationwide protest and social media campaign.

On Wednesday, the organizers behind the Women’s March on Washington — which drew in more than 2 million protesters the day after President Trump’s inauguration — have planned a day of demonstrations which includes the women participating to take off work, avoid shopping (with exceptions for small, women- and minority-owned businesses) and to wear red.

“On International Women’s Day, March 8th, women and our allies will act together for equity, justice and the human rights of women and all gender-oppressed people, through a one-day demonstration of economic solidarity,” the group’s website reads of the justification for the strike.

As Susan Ferrechio, the Washington Examiner’s chief congressional correspondent, noted on Twitter, the most affected by the strike are the students, the majority of whom are minorities and qualify for free or reduced lunch. They’ve lost a day of learning. Meanwhile, the average teacher’s salary in Alexandria is $72,705.

In addition, many families — who either don’t agree with the political protest or can’t afford to take the day off work — are being punished. They are going to have to arrange for child care Wednesday, an expense they hadn’t planned for or even wanted.

Alexandria wasn’t the first school system to shutter its doors for the protest. Last week in North Carolina, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools superintendent also decided to cancel classes for March 8 because so many staff members wanted to strike.

“While Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools values and supports its female employees, the decision to close schools is not a political statement,” district spokesman said Jim Causby wrote in a letter to parents, as reported in The Washington Post. “It is entirely about the safety of students and the district’s inability to operate with a high number of staff absences.”

But here’s the catch: it is a political statement. The schools are under no obligation to grant everyone’s request for the day off. Usually, vacation days are granted in order of seniority — with the more seasoned employees being granted their pick, and the newer employees having to work around their schedule.

The cancellations were also abrupt, especially in Alexandria’s case, giving parents and caregivers only one days’ notice. Surely a teacher can’t request a day off with one day’s notice — or shouldn’t be able to, especially if the end result is to shut down the educational system.

The schools should’ve planned for this day in advance if it were a problem, lining up volunteers and substitutes to replace the missing teachers.

The fact is, they didn’t. And, thus, have become complicit in a political movement.

As a taxpayer, I find these schools’ decision abhorrent. I pay school taxes so that my children can have a decent education, period. I don’t want to fund teachers’ political stunts, nor have to be held reliable for having to find an alternative source of schooling when my child should be in class, let alone pay for it.

The decision to strike on Wednesday is elitist to the core — punishing blue-collar workers who either can’t afford or don’t want to take the day off — with all of them having to foot the bill for child care.

What an egalitarian movement.

Sign up for Daily Opinion Newsletter

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide