In Chicago, they’ve got a choice: Reopen schools, or don’t be racist.
And also: Don’t be sexist.
Apparently, the schools are getting a threefer if they move either way, and the city’s teachers union is quick to remind ’em.
Not — it should be understood — a reasoned conclusion that everyone can get safely back to class.
Per TDW, the city’s November plan allows some public school parents to have their kids return as early as January 1st — special needs students considered “moderate” and “severe,” as well as prekindergarteners.
And everyone has the choice to re-enter February 1st.
Moms and dads were told to make a choice by Monday.
And if Chi-Town’s infection-doubling rate slows, it’s full steam ahead.
Otherwise, the whole thing’s a no-go.
But the teacher’s union thinks it stinks, and that puts everybody in a pickle.
Just ask the Wire:
[C]TU’s [president, Jesse Sharkey] has been adamantly opposed to allowing any teachers or students into school buildings, leaving the city scrambling to help thousands of low-income students who have little access to remote learning tools and whose parents may struggle to find child care and help with remote learning while they work.
So as Monday neared, the union brought out their biggest guns.
The reported tweet:
“The push to reopen schools is rooted in sexism, racism and misogyny.”
The ol’ standbys.
In a now deleted tweet, Chicago teacher’s union claimed the push to reopen schools is rooted in sexism, racism, and misogyny…
How, exactly? If anything, I think these accusations would make more sense for those pushing to keep schools closed. pic.twitter.com/SpyYKqomys
— Lisa Britton (@LisaBritton) December 7, 2020
As observed by Reason Magazine, there was no explanation.
There was no acknowledgment that many people who argue schools should reopen are doing so in good faith. A spokesperson for the union did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The union filed an emergency motion on the 7th.
From the Chicago Sun-Times:
The Chicago Teachers Union is making its second legal attempt in as many months to put Chicago Public Schools’ reopening plans on hold, accusing the district of illegally refusing to negotiate health and safety conditions before ordering teachers back into classrooms.
CTU’s “seeking an injunction that would force the district to negotiate in good faith and reach agreements with the union on several issues before schools reopen, which the union says CPS has not done.”
So how could in-person courses negatively affect some races, but not others, or females, and not males?
President Jesse issued a statement dabbling in doubling down:
“CPS has stonewalled us for months as we’ve been trying to bargain enforceable safety standards for our district-run schools. We want our schools open as well, but we want it done safely, and not on the backs of the majority Black and Latinx students we serve.”
Reason begs to differ:
To say that sexism, racism, or any other -ism is at the “root” of the (thus far unsuccessful) reopening push is absurd and insulting. Stressed-out parents who want to send their kids back to the classroom are not motivated by animus toward teachers, and they are certainly not motivated by animus toward women or minorities. Indeed, many people who want schools to reopen are women and minorities. Pandemic-related closures have disproportionately affected inner-city families that rely on public education. Young kids of color are some of the hardest hit. More than 800,000 women have dropped out of the work force during the pandemic, in large part because they now have to take care of their kids.
Will the teachers union retreat their claims? Despite the deletion of the tweet, I’d says it’s not likely.
Meanwhile, social media had some things to say:
Been feeling this lately. We can discuss the merits of reopening but the conversation cannot be rooted in white supremacy. White folks questioning BIPOC’s intelligence, especiall women of color. Our ability to “understand the science.” The coded language is hella out of pocket. https://t.co/xL1GkFGzGG
— Ish the Dish (@Ish_the_Dish) December 6, 2020
Then why are minority parents suing in California saying virtual learning has left their children behind?
You say you care about your students, but you clearly don’t. https://t.co/tND2mIvKeD
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) December 6, 2020
Unions are destructive and are undermining the education of our children.
— Dan Gainor (@dangainor) December 6, 2020
Teachers unions care about themselves & ideology well before any duty towards educating children with basic reading, writing & arithmetic skills
How many kids from unionized public schools can’t read at grade level but know almost every facet of Critical Race Theory?
— DirtyBallot (@OcelotKen) December 7, 2020
800,000 women have dropped out of the workforce BECAUSE of the school closures. These idiots have it backwards. Abolish teachers unions.
— Jacob (@jsbincr) December 7, 2020
Closures are rooted in ignorance intolerance and communist ideology .
— Croesus (@Croesus02717787) December 7, 2020
One user recommended an alternate route:
Solution to all this teacher union bullshit, homeschooling.
— Tracie Wiest (@TracieWiest) December 7, 2020
Nonetheless, don’t be surprised if reopening schools is really about racism — according to seemingly constant headlines, it appears pretty much everything in America is.
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