Many of us in Michigan have been sounding the alarm about our children’s education and the toll of the school closures on their mental health.  The data and science have been telling us since last year that children in school are safe.  

Even Dr. Fauci had stated, “Close the bars and keep the schools open”.

Back in July the director of the Centers for Disease Control said that:

‘having the schools actually closed is a greater health threat to the children than having them open.”

Back in November the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield reiterated that schools should not be closed during the coronavirus pandemic as they are a safe place for children when he said:

“The truth is for kids K–12, one of the safest places they can be, from our perspective, is to remain in school”

Now according to reporting by the Detroit News Governor Whitmer stated at a press conference yesterday that she believes that in-person classroom teaching is “crucial”.  She went on to say:

"Working families have been spread too thin over the past year, often taking on the roles of parent, teacher and employee all at the same time...This is not sustainable.”

Do you believe she does realize it was due to her executive orders that these “working families have been spread too thin over the past year, often taking on the roles of parent, teacher and employee all at the same time”?  If the science was behind her on those decisions I could support her but she did not follow the science when it came to schools and businesses.

Last month Whitmer did ask that Michigan school districts consider providing an in-person learning option by March 1st.  Even the Detroit News points out that she has not required them to do so and there are districts such as Kalamazoo that have resisted.

Kalamazoo Public Schools is among the 17% of school districts that are not offering any in-person classroom education. They stated that they will remain 100% virtual for the remainder of this school year, regardless of the harm educationally to the children.

At yesterday’s press conference she also stated:

"For young children, especially, face to face learning is critical...While some students and families have been successful in distanced learning, far too many have struggled."

 

I am happy to hear Governor Whitmer finally sees what the consequences of her actions are and calling attention to them.  This is something she and I, a conservative, can agree upon.  Interesting that she has finally seen this after Biden was recently seated as President.  Is it just a coincidence or something else?  Whatever it is I am happy to see and report that Governor Whitmer is finally advocating for the best interest of the children and starting to look towards the science on this issue to guide her.

Or is she?  She is really just politely asking that the teacher's unions, teachers and administrations open more of their schools to in-person classroom training for the children.  I would be very happy to see her join the Republicans in tying school funding to conditions that move the power over school closures and student sports from the governor to local health officials. I would also like to see both the Governor and state House and Senate tie school funding to schools opening more in-person classroom training.  

For a point of context according to a report from the Michigan State University Education Policy Innovation Collaborative.

  • In February 83% of Michigan school districts planned to offer some amount of in-person instruction
  • 65% of Michigan school districts planned to offer fully in-person instruction 
  • 18% of Michigan school districts planned to offer some form of hybrid instruction

Governor Whitmer please follow the science and make it a requirement that all schools open up for in-person classroom training.

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