When the PWC School Board met on November 3, shockwaves from the State elections less than 24 hours before reverberated in remarks during the citizen comment time. Parents, a student and several teachers voiced their questions and statements with boldness and clarity with Board Chairman Lateef politely accommodating.
According to a community citizen present at the meeting, there was no lack of security presence by school and county law enforcement members. If they were garnering over-time pay, what an additional expense to taxpayers!
Parent and student comments focused primarily on vaccine and mask mandates, transgender student privileges and CRT. One mother asked that parents again be allowed to volunteer in classrooms to assist already overworked teachers. A father declared he will litigate a claim against the Board IF and WHEN any misbehavior occurs akin to the sexual assaults that occurred in Loudoun County school bathrooms.
A high school student voiced her concerns about masks and mandatory vaccinations, saying students need to see the faces of their classmates and teachers. She also cited statistics about vaccines’ effectiveness and low COVID severity among young people to support her argument against mandatory vaccinations.
Speaking as one for the many, a teacher spoke of her weariness from long hours spent at school hours beyond 3:30, and then once home, her needing to communicate with students by e-mail into the evening. She said mandatory training for teachers several times a week robs her of time formerly designated for lesson preparation. In addition, the training sessions require advance paperwork, further stealing any downtime she might have. While she did not refer to the training sessions as being CRT in nature, they are added to an already demanding work load.
Two take-aways from her comments: Teachers are greatly overworked and stressed by expectations and adjustments imposed by COVID and new training meetings. Second, students are being short-changed in the classroom by teachers inadequately prepared to present each day’s lessons, at the least.
Right now, the Board meetings will be ‘lame-duck’ sessions in anticipation of sweeping changes that will come with inauguration of the new conservative team in Richmond. Youngkin, Sears, and Miyares put parents, schools and education at the top of their list for reform immediately. We wait with bated breath for that refreshing wind to blow!
— Posted by Tom Salmon for Doris, a fellow member of the Prince William and Manassas Family Alliance