By summer 2020 we had overwhelming evidence that schools were low-risk settings and children were not at risk from all over the world. The American Academy of Pediatrics issued strong science-based guidance calling for all schools to open full-time and cautioning against masking younger students. Then just 11 days later they backtracked and endorsed school closures — in a joint statement with the teachers unions.
These were the new battle lines. Unions wanted schools closed indefinitely with a long list of demands, many completely unrelated to COVID-19, to maximize their leverage. In places where they had the most political power, they could and did keep schools closed indefinitely. Research by Corey DeAngelis and Christos Makridis found that “school districts in locations with stronger teachers’ unions are less likely to reopen in person,” and they did “not find evidence to suggest that measures of COVID-19 risk are correlated with school reopening decisions.”
In February 2021, the teachers unions made their play for an astronomical ransom — over $125 billion dollars in no-strings funding for K-12 schools, most not to even be spent until 2023 or later, despite the fact that more than $50 billion from the previous COVID-19 relief bill was sitting unspent. It was an audacious raid on the Treasury that could only be linked to keeping school closed as an exercise of pure power politics.
It is no coincidence that in this period the unions amped up their political giving to Democrats. Roll Call found that in the first quarter: “The American Federation of Teachers political action committee gave $1.6 million to congressional candidates and committees, including $1 million to House Majority PAC, a super PAC that boosts Democratic candidates, a CQ Roll Call analysis of federal filings showed. The same group disclosed giving just $45,000 to federal committees in the first three months of 2019, the same point in the two-year election cycle.”
Read the full article here: https://dailycaller.com/2021/05/05/opinion-school-unions-locked-kids-out-coronavirus/