Schools row: Warning that it is ‘impossible to sustain social distancing amongst children

As a parent, you're at best enforcing compliance and providing help / redirection; you're not monitoring, giving feedback, ensuring students use feedback and revise, and creating differentiation. Those, not to mention content knowledge once you hit higher grades or knowledge of things like literacy acquisition, simply aren't things most parents are equipped with. Granted, I'm talking about real distance learning, not optional packets sent as emergency enrichment. But real instruction, which is time consuming.

But even if you were right, unless America wants to be done with brick & mortar schools (and survey shows: America desperately wants schools open if possible so they don't), your idea is ridiculous operationally. Even if you did a full distance year 2020-2021, you couldn't lay off most of the teacher workforce and get them back on a dime. Certainly not after showing them that kind of treatment. The only reason teacher shortages aren't worse is the stability in teaching. Make teachers go do something else for a year, many will retrain, retire early, and never come back. Certainly not right at the time people want them back.

You don't lay off a specialized, certified workforce en masse and expect to get them back exactly when you need them. That's why districts got their full funding this year even if they totally closed and kept paying contracted employees.

Don't get me wrong - With lost state & local funding, you might see some teacher job losses but not in those numbers. I know there are many unemployed and you figure, "oh, well hiring won't be hard" but the majority of the currently unemployed are service workers, many not even college educated, and even those with a college degree would need to jump through many hoops to get certified. You fuck over teachers with 50%+ layoffs, you're never getting your school open for 2022 even in states with lax certification. Teachers aren't coming back after that. It'd take years if ever. So anyone whinging at teachers getting paid now (for distance learning, which is truly hard work frankly, or even just PD during closure in the areas that are truly shutdown) is basically begging for schools not to open quickly post crisis.

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