The teacher-parent quandary: 'Do as I say, not as I do'

We’re becoming all-too-familiar with public officials who say one thing while making proclamations and do other things during this age of COVID-19 – the China virus.

This one takes the cake.

The teachers union president who led schools in closing in-person instruction in Berkeley, California, because of the virus was seen dropping off his own young daughter at a private school for in-person learning near San Francisco.

In a video, released by “Guerilla Momz,” an activist group of mothers dedicated to sending their children back to school toot suite, Berkeley Federation of Teachers President Matt Meyer is seen walking his 2-year-old child to a private preschool.

As head of the union, Meyer has called for what he describes as the “gold standard” for teachers, saying Berkeley schools should only reopen for in-person learning when educators are vaccinated, among other criteria. The latest proposal would see preschool through second grade returning by the end of March.

This is why Donald J. Trump said it was “morally inexcusable” for Joe Biden to keep the nation’s schools closed in lockstep with the teachers unions. There is no calculable health risk to students. However, there is a great deal of jeopardy for children to be kept out of school. Kids are dying from suicide, suffering from depression, and most have missed more than a year of school – which has its own costs.

Meanwhile, teachers unions have a loud voice – and lots of demands. Actual teaching and taking any risks are not high on their list.

In an email exchange with NBC Bay Area TV, Meyer defended his actions, saying, “Unfortunately, there are no public options for kids her age. There are major differences in running a small preschool and a 10,000 person public school district in terms of size, facilities, public health guidance and services that legally have to be provided.”

Many health experts, including the nation’s leading epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have said full vaccinations for educators are not necessary to provide a safe learning environment for in-person classes for grade school students. That’s because the risk is low for teachers.

Dr. Shelene Stine, a physician with a 3-year-old at the same private school as Meyer, argued students can adapt to safe standards amid the pandemic, saying her preschooler wears a mask every day to class.

“I am a physician. It is definitively the scientific agreement that it is possible to deliver safe in-person education,” Stine said. “It’s infuriating to know Matt Meyer says kids can’t wear masks when kids in his preschool wear them all day long.”

The Berkeley Unified School District has come up with a tentative agreement, based on teacher vaccination rollouts and other constraints, to reintroduce students to classrooms in waves, with the final high school wave returning on April 19, more than a years since most districts in California began school closures.

The state of California has been one of the worst-hit states by the pandemic – but children are virtually unaffected. However, February saw a drastic reduction in total cases. Public schoolteachers have been getting paid all this time. They’re getting a free ride. No wonder they have no incentive to go back to work.

Jonathan Zachreson, with an affiliated group called Reopen California Schools, said this new tactic of filming figures such as Meyer reinforces the frustration parents are dealing with handling delays in returning to class.

“It’s really a message of hypocrisy where we see this union representative saying it’s not safe to go back, yet, he feels safe enough to take his daughter to an in-person institution,” Zachreson said.

Gavin Newsom, Nancy Pelosi, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and a host of other public officials have preached one message to their subjects but not for themselves. They’ve said, in effect, “Do as I say, not as I do.”

Tactics like this should help Californians recall Gov. Newsom – as well as get state’s children back in school.

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This article was originally published by the WND News Center.

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