Diary

Closed Schools: It's Not About a Pandemic and All About Extortion

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

Our soon-to-be “leader,” the senile and gaffe-prone Joe Biden, likes to tell us he will and is “following the science” when it comes to the Wuhan flu pandemic.  He also seems to be a proponent of keeping schools closed for some time even after they have now been closed for the better part of a year.

Scientific and scholarly studies have now shown that “virtual learning” and Zoom classrooms are “vastly inferior” to in-class learning.  Poor and minority students are particularly at risk since they now lack the additional hands-on and personal interventions that cannot be achieved on a computer screen.

Want more science?  The Journal of the American Medical Association claims that a potential 5.53 million years of life expectancy has been sapped from public school students through decreased earnings, less educational achievement, a worse health outcomes.  The CDC has reported increased incidences of drug abuse and overdoses and suicides among school-age kids.

On the other side, there is no evidence that schools are Petri dishes of Covid-19.  To date, a mere 168 kids under the age of 17 have died from the disease, or 0.05% of all deaths.  Conversely, those age 65-74 account for 21% of deaths which would make them the dumbest kids with the worst left-back records in history.  The well-respected scientific medical British journal Lancet declared: “COVID-19 is generally a mild disease in children, including infants.”  Even when the New York Times editorializes that there is no evidence of the spread in schools, you know the science does not back up closing schools.

So why do they remain closed?  First, let’s get something straight upfront: despite the nice propaganda put out by the teacher unions, they give a rat’s ass about the kids their members teach.  They do not care about your kid’s well-being, but their own and those of their members which translates into union dues.

It was the 35,000-strong United Teachers of Los Angeles who gave away the scam.  In order to reopen schools, they demanded that the city (1) defund the police, (2) place a moratorium on charter schools, (3) enact Medicare For All, (4) provide more welfare for illegal immigrants, and (5) levy more taxes on commercial property and wealth.  As is obvious, none of these demands has anything to do with education.  They are just part of some AOC pipe dream, but indicative of the Leftist mindset that dominates teacher unions today.

Now for the really scary part: they have an ally in the White House come January 21st who has suggested that the schools just remain closed the remainder of this school year.  What will get schools open?  Well, the unions have a suggestion: a $100 billion “investment” that sounds more like ransom.  One study found that the stronger the local union, the less likely the school district would reopen to in-class instruction.  These great panderers with “the best interests of students at heart” are holding those very students hostage.

That particular study also found that teachers themselves were seeing a financial bonanza while the parents of those students were suffering.  After all, they are still collecting a paycheck along with benefits most Americans would kill for while saving on day care costs if they have children.  They can also set their own hours of “instruction” from the comfort of their homes which, incidentally, eliminates that tedious five-days-a-week commute to the brick schoolhouse.  One might add that glass of off-screen Zinfandel is an added bonus not afforded by in-person instruction.

So, what is Biden’s role in this charade?  He really does not care about students and their educational outcome.  What he cares about is continued teacher union support and as long as they pull his strings- among the many string-pullers- he will “follow the science” as he and the teacher unions see it.

Polls show that parents want their kids to return to school.  In my neck of the woods, many private and parochial schools have reopened with nary an instance of Covid among students or teachers.  These are the laboratories which prove the public school resistance to reopening is not rooted in either science nor reality.  The only people who do not want schools to reopen are the teacher unions and Leftist politicians in their pocket.  Is it any wonder that between 1990 and today, the NEA and AFT have contributed 94% of political donations to Democrats?

There is one solution, but no one has the guts to do it: de-unionize the public schools.  Most private and public schools do not have teacher unions and they generally turn out a better educated product with fewer behavioral problems than their public education counterparts.  They also do not dumb-down the curriculum or purge the teaching of classics in some form of woke social justice virtue signaling.  Despite rising costs which only seem to go up every year, public schools have stagnated or gone backwards in educational output over the years.

These facts are some science every taxpayer and voter could understand, get behind, and follow.