The president and his gangster minions are pushing hard for schools to reopen in a couple of months, a political play having little to do with education or children's welfare. Opening schools is a polling winner because we want so badly for things to return to the way they were before the coronavirus pandemic.
We all want kids to go to school and learn. We want them to see their friends. We want them to do their activities. We want those from tough homes to get their school meals and have a safe haven. We want the high school seniors to enjoy their final year.
We want all of it.
A online, informal survey by the Minnesota Department of Education attracted more than 130,000 votes and almost 64% said they'd feel comfortable sending students into school buildings in the fall. Only 11% were uncomfortable and 24% were unsure.
Yes 40% No 26% Only if I feel it's being done a safe manner 34%
Are you in favor of schools reopening this fall during the coronavirus pandemic?
Thank you for voting!
Only if I feel it's being done a safe manner
Some parents want their lives to return to normal, too. Having children at home distance-learning was a challenge for many. Jobs were affected. Getting the kids back into school would be a good thing for everybody (although it doesn't seem like anybody's asking teachers what they think).
But, and this is sorta big, what exactly would reopened schools look like and how safe would they be for students, teachers, staff, bus drivers? Everybody.
Because while sending students into schools is the most popular option, the most important question is whether we can do it safely. And will parents willingly send their children into situations if they're not sure the kids will be safe?
As is always the case with this president, his Twitter account is long on tough talk and short on specifics. He's threatening to cut off funding to districts that don't reopen on his timeline, but offering no guidance on how the federal government might help schools be safe.
It is always about bullying, never about policy. The president is worried most about his reelection, not about kids learning in a safe environment in the midst of a pandemic. He wants things to seem normal so more people will vote for him. That's his play.
You'd hope parents would be more worried about their children than politics. If the schools can't properly reopen, there is little doubt they will be coronavirus cauldrons. Putting 30 children into a classroom for a school day is begging for outbreaks.
When it comes down to it, will parents really be willing to put their children into that situation? Yes, the likelihood of a young person dying from the virus is low. But it's not zero. We are learning there are other serious long-term effects of COVID-19. And the kids could bring the virus home with them.
There's just so much we don't know. Sending children back to school in a "normal" way seems like playing coronavirus roulette.
Kids need to be back in school. Parents need their children to be back in school. The president and his mouthpieces should be helping figure a way to do that safely instead of bullying schools to put students in harm's way.