Biden Should Listen to Science, Not Unions, and Open Schools Now

Today on the floor, I discussed President Biden’s promise to re-open schools within the first 100 days of his presidency and the importance of in-person learning for students. Excerpts of my remarks are below, and video can be found here

We know many families, they just don't have the ability either to access broadband or they don't have the supervision at home of family members to help keep children on task when it comes to virtual learning. It's a substitute, a poor substitute, in most instances.

As weeks turned into months, it became clear that many kids were falling behind, especially in foundational subjects like math and reading, and the learning deficit is even greater for students of color and those in high-poverty communities.

We need our schools to open, and of course to do so safely, which I believe they can.

In December, then-President-Elect Biden promised to safely reopen the majority of schools within his first 100 days in the White House. 

It seems that schools are not a breeding ground for COVID-19, and as long as commonsense precautions are taken, that schools can reopen safely. 

Unions in a number of major cities like Chicago have refused to return to school despite the fact that evidence shows that schools are able to open safely, again, if proper precautions are taken, and Congress has provided tens of billions of dollars to help them do so, and teachers, like others across the country, are being vaccinated.

Teacher unions demand in some cases that schools be closed altogether.

It's important that all of us listen to the science when we make our decisions and they not be made based on a political agenda or who is for or against the proposition. Our focus ought to be clearly on the students and the quality of education that they are receiving, as well as the collateral damage that's being done by keeping them out of the classroom.

President Biden needs to take his own advice and listen to the science and not the teachers’ unions.

 

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