Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Geniuses in Albany Strike Again

It looks like the folks in Albany, the ones who control education, have too much time on their hands. After all, there's a pandemic, a national crisis, and people are running around arguing about whether and how to open school buildings. In fact, people are hysterical over how the schools should be opened, and it's open season on teacher unions, even by media figures who generally appear not to be insane.

Albany missed the memo.

This is evident because one or more of the Albany geniuses has decided that willingness be tested for Covid cannot be a prerequisite for attending schools in person. For better or worse, NYC is frequently trotted out as an example of best practices as far as school openings. If Albany gets its way, that's finished. Once we allow people in who are exempt from testing, there will be no way to guarantee safety for anyone in school buildings.

In fact, the only way we've been able to open systems in the limited fashion we do is because we test, test more, and trace cases. If we have people who can't be tested, we will never know whether or not they have COVID. Despite all the nonsense trotted out by gung ho NY Times reporters, children can and do transmit the virus. European schools are closing for that very reason, but I guess they don't get that kind of story up in Albany. 

I'm not sure what it is that makes them make decisions like these. Maybe it's something in the water. Maybe it's waking up every morning to the smell of fresh cement. It's hard to say. I often hear people talk about how great the Regents are, but I've seen absolutely no evidence to support it. While Betty Rosa may not be a reformy fanatic like Merryl Tisch, she's made some of the very worst decisions I've ever seen on the behalf of English language learners. I thought she would fix it, and she's told me to my face she would, but this is even worse. 

This, if it holds, will destroy everything we've built in NYC. I have no idea what possesses these people. I regularly have students called out of my classroom because they haven't received required inoculations. I presume they are required because we would like to avoid the spread of disease. To me, that's well worth avoiding. In Albany, they seem to disagree. 

We're approaching half a million COVID deaths in the United States. Why on earth are our state education representatives so anxious to add to those numbers? Why do they think teachers need more risk? Why do they think students need it? Why do they think our families need it?

You'd have to ask the geniuses in Albany. Send them an email sharing your thoughts. I can't find Betty Rosa's email. Maybe she doesn't want to mix with the bootless and unhorsed. On the other hand, if it makes you feel any better, I doubt she has time to actually read mail from her constituents. She clearly could not care less what we think, and places safety last, an odd position for an ostensible educator.

Otherwise, she would never tolerate a blatantly idiotic decision like this.

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