If our schools must follow CDC guidelines the answer is a resounding, no. Schools will not reopen in the fall. While this list is not entirely comprehensive, but it is a good summation. You can read all the details on the CDC website.
How could any schools have enough space to place all desks 6 feet apart? How can students remain 6 feet apart in hallways? Can they expect teenagers not to congregate? Do they really expect them to wear masks all day? No recess or PE for elementary students? Loudoun schools, like most other public schools, are packed, there are not empty classrooms waiting to be filled so the students can be spread out. It’s simply not possible.
Governor Northam says everything he does, all the rules he makes up for our lives, are based on CDC guidelines. (When did the left decide the CDC and Dr. Fauci were so great? Don’t they know both work for Trump? Have they suddenly taken a liking to Trump?) There is little doubt that Northam will again base his school decisions on CDC recommendations. Since no public school in the commonwealth could come close to following CDC guidelines, he will have to keep schools closed.
So what are the alternatives? I have heard speculation some school systems (including Loudoun) are looking at sending students to school every other day. One week your children would go Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and the next week, Tuesday and Thursday. Won’t that be a nightmare for parents who must find daycare? I have no idea how students would get the required 180 days of school. Perhaps longer school days and school over the summer which would give them an extra quarter. But I seriously doubt the teachers’ unions would agree to teachers working longer hours or over the summer.
There’s no excuse to not use schools all year while expecting the taxpayer to pay to build more and more schools. What business closes their buildings for 11 or 12 weeks a year and must build new ones? It’s absurd. It’s been this way in public schools since the 1800s. It’s time the unions lost their stranglehold on taxpayers and schools are utilized all year. But I digress. That’s a rant for another day.
When I was in middle school the capacity of the school was doubled by what they called split shifts. One-half of the students went to school from 8:00 to 12:30 and the second half went from noon until 4:30. The morning shift got on the buses to go home as the afternoon shift got off the buses to begin their school day. We did that for two and half years and it didn’t seem we missed any ‘educational opportunities’, although it was hard on everyone, parents and students. In theory, it also meant more homework although I’m not sure that it did. Of course, it also meant more time in the classroom and a longer day for teachers, so that won’t happen. The NEA would never allow it and public schools would never require it of their teachers. But they have no problem requiring more and more money from taxpayers to fund more and more unneeded administrators and ‘curriculum specialists’, in addition to the school buildings that are only used three-quarters of the year. No one begrudges teachers their pay, but many of us resent having to pay for more and more redundant administrators and buildings to house them.
Bottom line, it’s looking doubtful that schools will open in the fall, if the CDC guidelines are followed, which I am sure Governor Northam will insist upon. Rising seniors will have no senior year, no sports, no extracurricular activities, and once again no prom and no graduation. It will be a grim year for everyone, except teachers, the vast majority of whom won’t have to work, or will have their work drastically curtailed, but will continue to get their full paychecks, unlike millions of Americans who are getting no paychecks. Not a bad gig if you can get it.
Do not expect a reduction in your taxes just because your kids can’t go to school. Chances are good that our taxes will increase to make up for the gap left by the lack of business revenue coming into the county coffers. Northam and the Democrats will be so happy! Our schools close, our businesses fail, and we all get to pay more taxes! Elections have consequences and this is what we get when the voters elected Democrats to take over in Richmond. Be careful what you wish for, and who you vote for, it may be your children missing a whole year of school while you pay more for it.