On Wednesday, the Prince William County School Board finally figured out how they want to start the upcoming school year. The title left me chuckling, School Board Adopts Return To Learn Plan For 2020-21 School Year (pwcs.edu). Here is how the document starts.
The Prince William County School Board unanimously (8-0) adopted a Return to Learning Plan that will have the first quarter of the school year as all virtual learning for most students. The first quarter will start for students on September 8, 2020, ending October 30, 2020. The goal will be to transition to a 50% capacity model in the second quarter, with the option for students to remain virtual. (continued here)
All virtual is not returning to school. Second quarter is just a maybe. What happened? Well, if you have three hours, you can listen to the whole video.
Otherwise, here are some news articles.
- UPDATED: Prince William schools to reopen with virtual instruction for most students (princewilliamtimes.com)
- Prince William schools won’t offer in-person instruction in fall (insidenova.com)
- Prince William County approves all-virtual start to school year (wusa9.com)
The vote actually wasn’t unanimous. The problem is that four board members refused to allow any form of in-person learning.
School board members voting against reopening schools under the 50% plan included School Board members Lillie Jessie (Occoquan), Vice Chair Loree Williams (Woodbridge), Adele Jackson (Brentsville) and Lisa Zargarpur (Coles). (from here (princewilliamtimes.com))
Is the School Board following the science? No. However, their confusion is at least partly understandable. Much of the news media is so biased it is burying the truth. Here is an example. Consider how White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany (7/16/2020) to a question from a fellow named Owen.
Q Well, you talked about earlier, with school districts — what we’re seeing is more school districts — at least in Virginia, for example, last night — deciding to go online only. What does the President say to parents out there who are now going, “Okay, what do I do with my kids?”
MS. MCENANY: You know, the President has said unmistakably that he wants schools to open. And I was just in the Oval talking to him about that. And when he says open, he means open in full — kids being able to attend each and every day at their school.
The science should not stand in the way of this. And as Dr. Scott Atlas said — I thought this was a good quote — “Of course, we can [do it]. Everyone else in the…Western world, our peer nations are doing it. We are the outlier here.”
The science is very clear on this, that — you know, for instance, you look at the JAMA Pediatrics study of 46 pediatric hospitals in North America that said the risk of critical illness from COVID is far less for children than that of seasonal flu.
The science is on our side here, and we encourage for localities and states to just simply follow the science, open our schools. It’s very damaging to our children: There is a lack of reporting of abuse; there’s mental depressions that are not addressed; suicidal ideations that are not addressed when students are not in school. Our schools are extremely important, they’re essential, and they must reopen.
(from here (whitehouse.gov))
How did much of the news media report McEnany’s statement? They deliberately misconstrued her words by taking something she said out of context.
The science should not stand in the way of this.
Fortunately, there are still some reporters who are uncomfortable with lies. Here is how The Washington Times reported on this matter, Jake Tapper scolds reporters for misconstruing Kayleigh McEnany’s ‘science’ comments: ‘Be fair’ (washingtontimes.com).
CNN host Jake Tapper on Thursday scolded reporters for cherry-picking a quote from White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany that appeared to reject “the science” in favor of reopening schools amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Ms. McEnany told reporters earlier Thursday that science was on the “side” of the Trump administration in reopening schools in the fall at full capacity.
“The science should not stand in the way of this,” she said. “And as Dr. Scott Atlas said — I thought this was a good quote — ‘Of course, we can [do it]. Everyone else in the … Western world, our peer nations are doing it. We are the outlier here. (continued here)
The Washington Times article continues and includes some examples.