Why Do Teachers Unions Think Elementary-Age Students Need Vaccines and Masks?

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

If the American Federation of Teachers and other teachers unions actually cared about children, they would not have opposed returning to schools as long as they did. If they actually cared about education, they would not be orchestrating a massive gaslighting campaign to make it look like they were always working toward the goal of returning to schools. If they were serious about being, well, serious, they’d get rid of Randi Weingarten.

But, none of that is actually going to happen, because the goal of a teachers union is political and definitely not about education. If it were about education, the unions would have followed the actual science and made recommendations for things that were attainable. They would not have stymied efforts to get schools open or force kids to suffer in social isolation. The science has said, pretty clearly for most of the school year, that kids should be back in school.

They do not transfer this virus at the rate adults do, if they transfer it at all. Hard-surface transmission does not appear to actually exist. We are not seeing outbreaks linked to schools that are open. In fact, schools that have tended to shut down because of case counts do so because of people not taking care of themselves outside of school. Your kids could and should have been in school all along.

And now, even as the CDC itself is admitting that, yeah, kids should be in school, the unions are trying to “push” for reopening while at the same time continuing to talk about little kids wearing masks and getting vaccinated – something no one who is serious has ever suggested ever.

Via my RedState colleague Nick Arama:

Weingarten then attacked states that had eliminated mask mandates, “The politics have been as such that states like Texas and Iowa then rush to say no mask mandates when we still don’t have a vaccine that’s okay for elementary school students and we’ve seen what happened in India in terms of the variants and young kids.”

Weingarten claimed they didn’t want to be the “mask police” so they wanted guidance from the CDC on what to do. “In elementary schools, until we have the vaccines, it seems like, unfortunately, we still going to have to keep wearing our masks and keep social distancing because we don’t want outbreaks.” This, despite the record of transmission in elementary schools and elementary age kids being very low.

The AFT, which Weingarten leads, is helping her push this very ill-informed narrative.

This is largely fact-free science they’re pushing. Let schools go mask optional, but mandating masks in elementary schools, when there is virtually no science to support it, is beyond stupid and just another pointless hoop the unions want schools to jump through.

But, had the unions focused on real science and real policy that was in the best interests of children and education as a whole, we wouldn’t be in this spot. Scores from across the U.S. are going to be down this year, because the fear surrounding the schools kept people off campuses far longer than they needed to be. Virtual learning doesn’t meet the needs of students, and all of this has come together in a massive black hole of growth and development that shouldn’t have existed.

From the party of science comes teachers unions who apparently don’t believe in it at all.