It is time to open our schools. For all the talk about science, many liberals continually ignore the science that shows students can safely return to school.
“There is increasing data to suggest that schools can safely reopen and that safe reopening does not suggest that teachers need to be vaccinated,” the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told reporters during a White House news briefing this week. She added, “Vaccinations of teachers is not a prerequisite for safely reopening schools.”
Catholic schools in Boston have been open throughout most of the global pandemic. In New York and Chicago, students have been attending school in person since last fall at Catholic schools. By following strict protocols, the schools have been able to stay open and still keep their students and staff safe.
In contrast, teachers and school administrators in the Fairfax school system in Virginia jumped the line for vaccines yet still refused to open their schools. They certainly don’t understand that you’re not an essential worker if you can’t show up when it is essential.
Even The Washington Post chimed in, saying, “There is simply no common-sense explanation for vaccinating teachers ahead of other high-risk groups if they refuse to return to full-time in-person learning. The simple truth is that the Fairfax school system wants the benefits of heroism without taking a heroic action.” Even one of the nation’s most liberal papers couldn’t defend such outrageous actions.
Then there’s the story of Sarah Chambers, who is the area vice president for the Chicago Teachers Union. She went on Twitter to say it wasn’t safe for teachers to return to the classroom. Then, on the same day, she posted photos of herself on Instagram by a pool in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. You can’t make this stuff up.
I know plenty of teachers who are eager to be in the classroom, but their union is blocking the way. Union bosses should not be running our country. The American people should be.
In San Francisco, the problem isn’t just the union — it’s the liberal school board. A week ago, they voted to change the names of 44 schools that were named after icons like Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Paul Revere and Thomas Jefferson.
Ironically, the county has the worst record for Black student achievement in the entire State of California. Sadly, just 19 percent of the black students in the district can pass the state reading exam. Instead of being so concerned about the names on the sides of their schools, they should be more concerned that many of their students can’t even read them.
And in Iowa, that’s right — Iowa, Young America’s Foundation exposed plans by the Ames Community School District to celebrate Black History Month using the Black Lives Matter At School Week of Action curriculum. Among the ideas forced on students — from 4 to 18 — are “transgender affirming, globalism and disruption of Western nuclear family dynamics.”
A Brookings Institution report showed that the overwhelming majority of people who graduated from school, maintained a job and waited to have children until after they were 21 and married, lived a life free of poverty. In other words, affirming the benefits of a traditional family is not only morally sound, it is economically sound too.
This is yet another reminder that what was exposed in Ames, Iowa, is strictly about politics. The blatantly-Marxist aims of the BLM organization’s week of action are to indoctrinate the rising generation from their first days in government schools to graduation. This all has little to do with racial harmony and is more about the left exploiting race to push a radical worldview and values on students.
Want to do something about race in America? Give Black parents a right to choose the best education for their children. I trust parents. Sadly, the unions and the socialists do not. They want total control. They don’t trust the individual, and they certainly don’t trust parents.
So many parents understand that their children perform better with in-person instruction. After an initial drop in enrollment at the start of the pandemic, many Catholic and other private schools that kept their classrooms open have seen dramatic increases.
Instead of giving government-run schools all of the funds for education, we should consider giving each parent a fixed amount for each child and let them choose which school is best. During the past year, some parents may have chosen a school that was virtual — either government-run or private. Others, most certainly, would have selected a school that was open for in-person instruction.
Rather than letting the big government union bosses or liberal school administrators decide what’s best for individual families, let’s put the power in the hands of parents to make the right choice for their daughters and sons. It is time to open our schools.
• Scott Walker was the 45th governor of Wisconsin. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him @ScottWalker.