Biden Surrendering On School Reopenings
Biden Surrendering On School Reopenings
Schools being closed are a disaster in slow motion, and everyone can see it. Joe Biden has for months paid lip service to the fact that schools need to reopen. But he has given up on actually doing anything to make it happen.
The same media that screamed bloody murder about Donald Trump not using the bully pulpit of the presidency to make people wear face masks is now shrugging their shoulders when Joe Biden calls a lid for the day. Poor guy, he just needs a day off. Presidenting is HARD for the elderly.
But it’s okay – after blaming “a mistake in the communication” that came straight out of his OWN PRESS SECRETARY’S MOUTH – the Biden administration wants everyone to know that they are totally committed to opening schools up. Totally. No take backs.
Schools closed under President Trump, and they will reopen under President Biden. https://t.co/55HVhmQSx6
— Ronald Klain (@WHCOS) February 18, 2021
To blame President Trump for closing schools last year is particularly jaw-dropping, as Democrats and teachers’ unions (but I repeat myself) were the ones shutting everything down last year on the local level, not the federal level. And as we have heard repeatedly, EVERYTHING school-related has to be done at the state and local level. Apparently the only thing the feds can do is shovel out the money to the schools, but they have no power to get them back open.
Nope, that is all up to the local school districts. And the school boards, who absolutely understand that the students in still-closed districts have had a year of their education sacrificed to keep the teachers’ unions happy. Or not. You see, apparently the parents who want their kids back in school are just potheads who need babysitters. Language warning on the video below – this is not pretty.
So, if Joe Biden is serious about getting schools reopened, AS HE SAYS HE IS, then shouldn’t he be working the phones, calling these school districts that are at open war with parents, telling them to figure out a way to safely reopen? Isn’t THAT what we were told the bully pulpit of the presidency should be used to do?
All we have seen so far is a CDC director that has openly admitted that the new guidelines were tailored to fit the requests of the teachers’ unions, and a Biden administration that is unable to speak out for fear of offending the same unions that got them elected. But never fear, here comes the media to explain why this is so super-duper hard for Biden!
A month into the new administration, the White House still cannot provide the clarity much of America needs about when children can return to school, which kids can go back and when their teachers will be vaccinated. Biden declared Tuesday night at a CNN town hall that teachers should be prioritized for vaccinations. But decisions about teacher vaccinations and schools reopening are made at the local level — with school districts often having to abide by state guidelines that determine based on the level of transmission in a community.”
This is a reflection of the enormous scientific, educational and political lift it will require to get millions of young Americans back into in-person learning. Given these complications, it’s perhaps not surprising White House officials have hedged on key details. But at times, their unspecific language and repetition of talking points apparently designed to navigate a tricky political position with few easy answers, has only added more opacity.”
In the midst of that concern about emerging variants, the Biden administration’s messaging about what their exact goals are — how many days of in-person instruction in K-8 schools would constitute success, for example, and exactly how teachers should be prioritized in the vaccine lineup — has been hazy at best.”
That is some top-shelf kid-glove treatment there, nicely glossing over some hard truths.
Because Democrats and the unions see this as a once in a lifetime opportunity to double or triple the number of teachers in the name of social distancing, knowing the new hires won't be let go after the pandemic. That means more dues to the union and more money to Democrats. https://t.co/FjY6K2MkVq
— Reverend Doctor Jill Biden Derek Hunter (@derekahunter) February 18, 2021
Meanwhile, parents are losing patience – even the ones who identify themselves as “progressive” or are publishing in leftist venues like Vox. This is not a red versus blue issue, despite the Democrats’ best efforts to frame it as such. This has become the single greatest bipartisan unifying issue in American life right now. If schools don’t reopen, parents – particularly moms – can’t get back to work. What about wage equality, Democrats? If schools don’t reopen, the mental health issues that have exploded among children are only going to escalate. What about mental health, Democrats? If schools don’t reopen, the kids who are already the furthest behind will continue to fall between the cracks. What about all those poor and minority and special education students that are falling further behind, Democrats?
Oh, wait. Biden is supposedly in charge, but it can’t be his fault. Nope, it’s the fault of… wait for it… REPUBLICANS for pointing it out! Pouncing activated!
Republicans unite around a message — schools should reopen, and Democrats are to blame https://t.co/zPZVJKQ5dS
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) February 18, 2021
Amid bitter fights over the role Donald Trump should play in their party, the GOP is unified behind a clear message: Restrictions on in-person learning should end, and only Republicans are ready to end them. In interviews and in ads, Republicans are hitting the talking point hard, using the issue to woo suburban voters alienated by Trump’s abrasive style.”
To make their case, the GOP is using Democrats’ promise to follow the science against them. Republicans have armed themselves with research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, saying that Democrats are ignoring data to keep students at home, and that only union pressure can explain why.”
Oh, so the Democrats are upset that the Republicans are unifying around a single issue instead of letting the Democrats divide them by invoking Trump. And they are using SCIENCE to argue against The Party Of Science. How dare they???
The potency of this issue may change in coming weeks. Many school districts are beginning to reopen, though mostly in a part-time way, consistent with CDC guidelines and allowing for distance inside schools between people.”
A key political question may be whether voters see partially open districts as safe and well-reasoned approaches, or as failures because they do not provide full-time, traditional school.”
“Many” school districts doesn’t mean ALL school districts, and it certainly does not mean all grades. And the bigger districts, like Los Angeles Unified, are even drawing the ire of the editorial board of the Los Angeles Times.
It’s not easy to go against UTLA (United Teachers Los Angeles), as (Supt. Austin) Beutner learned during a bruising strike two years ago. But at this point, the superintendent needs to put on his big-boy pants, reopen schools and demand that teachers return or risk their jobs. Union leaders in turn need to realize that not only are students done a tremendous disservice by the continued closures, but most parents vehemently want their kids back in the classroom. The union is jeopardizing its own popularity if it continues to put the needs of students and families last.”
The unions are locked in a power struggle against the school districts. The school districts are locked in a power struggle against the parents. The parents are angry, desperate, and looking for someone to give them a straight answer.
Joe Biden had his chance to give them a straight answer, and he and his administration have consistently blown it. With 2022 at stake, Republicans better be as good at “pouncing” on this issue as the media thinks they are.