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Fri Dec 10, 2021, 11:24 AM

 

Schools Are Closing Classrooms on Fridays. Parents Are Furious.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/08/us/schools-closed-fridays-remote-learning.html

DETROIT — Caitlin Reynolds, a single mother, was happy that her son, L.J., was finally settled into fourth grade after a rocky experience last year with remote learning.

Then, on Wednesday, Nov. 17, an announcement: Detroit public schools would close their classrooms every Friday in December. There would be virtual school only.

On Friday, a follow-up announcement: School was also canceled starting that Monday, for the entire week of Thanksgiving. This time, there would be no online option.

After a few months of relative calm, some public schools are going remote — or canceling classes entirely — for a day a week, or even for a couple of weeks, because of teacher burnout or staff shortages.

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This is a localized problem, but with the very low risk of kids in the classroom and the incredible disruption to working class parents Schools really need to rethink these policies.

Much like crime and inflation I really think democrats need to go on the offensive against school districts that are breaking the covenant of taking the kids on a regular schedule so parents (Often single mothers) can work,

This effects the most vulnerable in our society by far and I am afraid many are simply out of touch of the reality of the working class.

If we ignore the needs of the working class in America, we will lose them.

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Schools Are Closing Classrooms on Fridays. Parents Are Furious. (Original post)
cinematicdiversions Dec 2021 OP
Chin music Dec 2021 #1
Mad_Machine76 Dec 2021 #5
FrankChurchDem Dec 2021 #2
Chin music Dec 2021 #10
Reader Rabbit Dec 2021 #3
Freddie Dec 2021 #4
cinematicdiversions Dec 2021 #18
Freddie Dec 2021 #19
Wingus Dingus Dec 2021 #6
KY_EnviroGuy Dec 2021 #7
pinkstarburst Dec 2021 #8
Initech Dec 2021 #9
Chin music Dec 2021 #11
Initech Dec 2021 #13
Chin music Dec 2021 #16
Initech Dec 2021 #17
Chin music Dec 2021 #20
LizBeth Dec 2021 #12
Blue_Adept Dec 2021 #14
brooklynite Dec 2021 #15
Autumn Dec 2021 #21

Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)


Response to Chin music (Reply #1)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 12:29 PM

5. THIS

All of this. Democrats (and the rest of us) are going to have to get aggressive about messaging this.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 11:46 AM

2. It's not localized

It's widespread. Teacher burnout is insanely high across the nation. We talk to schools and districts every day that are literally on the brink of a complete breakdown.

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Response to FrankChurchDem (Reply #2)


Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 11:58 AM

3. Definitely NOT localized.

It comes from decades of the U.S. having no social safety net for its citizens and then piling all those responsibilities onto public schools. Public schools aren't really centers of education anymore. They exist to provide childcare to working parents, to provided mental health care to traumatized kids, to provide social services for kids living in poverty, etc.

All the social services that civilized countries provide to their citizens automatically, the United States has devolved onto its public schools. We teachers have been martyrs for the "sake of the kids" for a long time, and now we're finally seeing that there is a very thin line between martyrdom and suicide.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 11:59 AM

4. My district can't get bus drivers

Their “solution” is to cancel one bus run per week (rotating), you’re on your own for your kid’s transport that week. I’m retired so I could take my granddaughter no problem but what a PITA for working parents.

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Response to Freddie (Reply #4)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 06:27 PM

18. Honestly that is a horrible job.

 

It used to be a fine job for retirees but districts increased the various requirements for the position without taking into account they have to find people willing to work a split shift, deal with children, deal with the DMV and have a ton of liability all for $15 an hour part time no benefits....

And they wonder why they are short staffed,

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Reply #18)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 06:33 PM

19. It's somewhat better around here

I used to do payroll for a school district with in-house busing (most of them use an outside company), the job paid at least $18/hour 10 years ago, plus if they worked a certain # of hours they could get insurance, and they were in the PA teachers retirement system. Used to be a good job for farmers with the mid-day and summers off, but there aren’t a lot of farmers around here anymore.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 12:31 PM

6. I don't think it's a policy choice, if they don't have staff to safely

and effectively conduct school. If you don't have personnel, you don't have personnel. Can't magically conjure them. This is the fault of the community and state not vaccinating enough.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 12:57 PM

7. You cannot create new teachers and staff overnignt and you must have the money.

Across the country, Republicans revolt at every mention of tax increases no matter how dire the need. Then, just like they do at the Federal level, they will bitch about government failings caused by budget cuts. It's a feature, not a bug.

tRump's administration failed the nation last year by not anticipating our crucial functions becoming over-stressed and out of money. Obviously, the prime example is medical personnel but others like teachers and transportation personnel have suffered almost as bad.

KY.....

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 01:02 PM

8. This is NOT a localized problem

Schools are in crisis across the nation due to the ongoing effects of the covid pandemic. There are NO easy solutions to fixing these problems and getting angry at the schools on behalf of parents is kind of pointless because a lot of it is out of the school's control.

In many areas nationwide, there is a shortage of bus drivers, cafeteria workers, teachers, school security staff, and teaching assistants. The largest district in my city has been operating with 2/3 the cafeteria workers they need on each campus all year. Another district told parents before school started that they were so short on bus drivers that if they hadn't signed up on a list that was posted online for less than 24 hours, their kid was not going to be able to ride the bus that school year, and they would just have to find a way to get them to school.

No one wants to work as a sub. And so with all these shortages in teachers, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, teacher's aides... other teachers are getting called out of their prep periods to cover classes, special ed TA's who should be supporting special ed learners are being pulled and told to teach math, which if you signed up for AP calculus and it's now December and your school still can't hire a teacher, would be super frustrating, and everyone on every school campus is super burned out.

I'm sure someone will be quick to post "JUST PAY THEM MORE."

They can't. There is no money. Because of covid, many districts lost enrollment which means there's now a huge loss of funds from the state. Parents chose to homeschool (no state funding) or they are going virtual (no state funding) and things got disrupted so some may have gone to charters or other things. My local district told teachers they got a pay raise only if they (like this was the responsibility of teachers) could increase the enrollment for 21-22 by 4,000 students from 20-21. Instead, district enrollment fell by that many students. So now the district just released an announcement yesterday that they will be cutting back all secondary classes for 22-23, (which reading between the lines will allow them to eliminate 1/4 of elective teacher positions), and will also do early release every Wednesday, which has parents up in arms because of the childcare issue, and teachers will now teach 6 out of 7, which has them up in arms because of the loss of prep time.

So it's a mess.

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Response to pinkstarburst (Reply #8)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 01:20 PM

9. Yeah the pandemic threw a massive wrench into the way society does things.

There is no easy solution to any of it. On one hand I can see why parents are bombarding school boards and city council meetings, but on the other hand I can also see being a school board or city council member and having to deal with these people on a daily basis. The right wing has turned our municipal governments into complaint centers.

The one thing about the pandemic in regards to jobs is that it's made people realize that doing shitty jobs for no pay isn't worth it, and now these things that were once considered every day activities have become risks. What do you do? It's really a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" kind of situation.

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Response to Initech (Reply #9)


Response to Chin music (Reply #11)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 01:54 PM

13. I'm seriously convinced at this point, if we told the MAGAs not to jump off a cliff...

There would be lines for MILES of people waiting to jump off the cliff. There would be people fighting to be first in line and people taking selfies right before they make the jump.

And you know how are they going to take over the workforce if most of them are dead or dying from COVID? We're going to see some crazy changes in demographics and population in the next couple of years, and there will be some cheap real estate available in Alabama, Mississippi and Florida! And this is all thanks to anti-vaxxers voluntarily taking themselves out of the population in very large numbers. Hell, Alabama is poised to project negative population growth for the first time in the state's history. That is insane. Pass the butter, the next couple of years are going to be fun to watch.

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Response to Initech (Reply #13)


Response to Chin music (Reply #16)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 02:07 PM

17. Oh I'm not cheering on the destruction believe me!

But I am saying that it's insane to watch what is happening right now and Fox News, Newsmax, and OAN are leading the MAGAs off a cliff. The anti-vaccine movement is literally becoming a death cult.

That is disturbing. But it will be interesting to watch what changes in terms of demographics in the next few years.

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Response to Initech (Reply #17)


Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 01:49 PM

12. Making doctor appts I saw a real issue emerge for teachers. They have to find a

substitute. They need to make appts but they cannot make the appts because they cannot find substitutes to fill the time they are away. It was a constant consistent issue for them I had not realized but learned thru doing my job.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 01:54 PM

14. Yes, those understaffed schools should take kids no matter what

No busses? Walk, ya little kids! No sidewalks? wah!

No teachers for the day because of understaffing? Just sit quietly in the room. What's the worst that could happen.

ugh. seriously people?

This has been a growing problem for the past twenty years with fewer people going into the profession because of the pay and the abuse from the political side about teaching for testing only and so forth.

Now, when 800,000 people die and a lot of educators were a part of that number, and those involved in transportation, people are somehow shocked there isn't enough staffing?

And people at DU *demand* the schools open?

It's times like these I'm glad I reduced my participation here after 2016 and the way that all fell out.

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 02:00 PM

15. Which Democrats should go after the Democrats that run the school system?

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Response to cinematicdiversions (Original post)

Fri Dec 10, 2021, 08:04 PM

21. All four schools in our area have been on 4 day weeks for years. It works out well.

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