The education deformers have a new weapon in the war against teachers and teacher unions. Neoliberal reformers are blaming teachers for not wanting to sacrifice our lives for in-person learning in a pandemic and of course they want to slam teacher unions.
The Lancet is a leading medical journal. It's funny how this extensive research from 131 countries showing how closing schools is effective to slow the spread of coronavirus and opening them back up leads to a significant increase in infections isn't on the front page of the NY Times. I doubt the study will be covered in any corporate neoliberal publication but Reality Based Educator sent us a link.
From the summary of the research in the Lancet:
Individual NPIs (Non-pharmaceutical interventions), including school closure, workplace closure, public events ban, ban on gatherings of more than ten people, requirements to stay at home, and internal movement limits, are associated with reduced transmission of SARS-CoV-2, but the effect of introducing and lifting these NPIs is delayed by 1–3 weeks, with this delay being longer when lifting NPIs.
There is a worsening pandemic again in this country. We have never gotten COVID-19 under control in the United States since it first hit earlier in the year. We should be calling for all remote learning until there is no community spread, not the half-baked de Blasio, Carranza, Mulgrew blended learning that I think most insiders would agree is not working too well in plenty of schools.
For some context for people who cannot understand where the major push to open up is coming from, there is an important piece in Jacobin. It is called Neoliberal Education Reformers Have Found a New Way to Scapegoat Teachers. It analyzes the motives behind the open up the school buildings' crowd in some detail.
Liberal writers sympathetic to the corporate education reform movement are beating the drum about reopening schools, claiming to stand up for low-income students. But attacking teachers and their unions does nothing for poor and working-class students — it simply scapegoats the people who have dedicated their lives to actually helping those students.
Please read the entire piece to see what we are up against. It isn't just Trump; this is bipartisan. We need to have a strong union and not the Mulgrew misled UFT to stand up to the deformers as they attack teachers and their unions now for trying to protect our health.