Yesterday, we wrote about parents threatening to strike on the first day of New York City public school — and beyond — because they don’t trust the Department of Education to protect their children’s health. They demand a remote schooling option until Covid, including the Delta variant, is no longer a threat. We heard from those who are willing to join in. Now, here is the opposing opinion:
CJC: Definitely will not support a parent strike or a remote option. We should not be trying to dilute an in person school’s already scant resources to force a remote option in every school!
CC: No, I would not support a parent strike. I don’t want DOE to expend time and resources on a fully remote track when the pedagogical efficacy is questionable at best and the need unclear for any child who is vaccine eligible.
MC: I would not support a parent strike. Parents can’t have it both ways, which is to use the DOEs devices and funding to get what they want. The DOE can’t be made to bend to the will of every parent who has a tantrum because they didn’t get the cookie they wanted. Enough coddling of parents who aren’t getting their way. I don’t want my children’s education impacted because some parents are kvetching.
LR: I am not in favor of a parent strike at all. We fought for so long last year to get the kids back into school. A parent strike undermines our position on getting kids back into the classroom.
JJ: I would not strike. I am absolutely sending my kids back to school in the Fall. Masks, social distancing, and the vaccine are all working. As someone who has worked in person for most of the pandemic I have seen firsthand that it works in much more crowded situations than public schools.
TL: I would not support such a strike. All the relevant experts have concluded, taking into account the risks vs benefits, that in-person schooling is critical. Allowing a remote option that is open to anyone would send the message that in-person schools are dangerous, which does not reflect the science nor the data. We have a lot of data from all over the world now that schools do not contribute to spread, that children do not generally get sick even if they do contract covid and are not likely to infect adults, and that the Delta variant – while more contagious – does not generally cause children who contract covid to get any sicker than they did before Delta. We must base public policy decisions on rational decision-making that takes real facts and evidence into account, not hysteria or irrational fears.
SH: Before they decide to go on strike, I would first like to see the vaccination card of these concerned parents. If they are ready to keep their children hostages at home, they should first show proof of vaccination – and soon booster shot – themselves.
LS: Your nut’s. Students need to go back.
Food For Thought:
KC: My kids are special ed kids that need to be in school to have access to their speech and OT therapist and special ed teachers and to also be around other kids. Everyone has to evaluate the risks and benefits for their families and the well being of their kids. If people want to keep their kids home and advocate for a remote option, I have no objection to them doing that and would “support” them in their goal. But practically speaking do they want to see this remote option as part of the IEP process?
AM: This is all last minute – again. If the DOE reverses course it will send them scrambling for a solution they should have been prepared to roll out. I’d prefer a central remote option so the DOE has ownership of it rather than passing it to the individual schools who already have their plans in place.
MV: What I WOULD support is a parent strike to require that all students eligible for a vaccine get vaccinated, just as we require students to get other vaccinations in order to come to school (with an exception for those who can’t get it for health reasons).
MS: My concern is that parents are starting to redshirt their kids more and more and now we will have a kindergarten bubble where some 4 year olds will go to school with 6 year olds. New York public school age cut-off is Dec 31. This is very unfair to some kids who are still too young. (Ed. note: It is nearly impossible to hold a child back in NYC public schools. Those who skip this year will be put in the grade matching their age the next.)
So that’s the parents’ take, pro and con. On Friday, we’ll take a look at parents who are looking at the situation from the teachers’ points of view – and where some teachers stand.