Democrats in the Senate voted against an amendment that would keep schools open to students in the next school year for in-person learning.
Not only would the amendment, authored by Republican Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, “ensur[e] that all schools should be open for in-person learning 5 days a week for the 2021-2022 school year,” but it also sought to “to establish a deficit-neutral reserve fund relating to helping students, particularly students who are low-income or minorities or who have special needs, that suffered from school closures pushed by teacher labor organizations that ignored the science.”
While 49 Republicans in the Senate including co-sponsors Marsha Blackburn, Mike Braun, John Cornyn, Josh Hawley, Jim Inhofe, James Lankford, Marco Rubio, Ben Sasse, Thom Tillis, and Todd Young voted in favor of the amendment, which called out teachers unions for their anti-science charades, all 50 Democrats voted against getting kids back in classrooms.
“In over a year of uncertainty and the pain of living through a pandemic, I have to admit, I’m shocked that I have to come down here to talk about the importance of quality, in-person education. Today we are debating a $4 trillion tax and spending bill. And that’s on top of the $2 trillion we spent in March and the $4 trillion we spent last year. How insane is it that with all that spending, there’s still no guarantee that our kids will be back in school this fall?” Scott said in a statement. “The sad reality is more than 1 million kids did not enroll in their local schools during the pandemic. Thanks to labor union bosses and their unneeded and damaging school shutdowns, kids have been kept out of school and many — far too many — have suffered psychologically.”
While the CDC encourages in-person schooling, national teachers unions are already gearing up to shut schools down due to COVID-19. Just last week, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten threatened school closures around the nation if students and teachers don’t mask up when they return for the fall semester.
“Masks stop transmission,” Weingarten claimed on CNN. “So universal masking is going to be very helpful to keep kids safe, to keep the unvaccinated safe, and to keep schools open.”
Weingarten, who represents more than 1.7 million American educators, also said schools are justified in closing down if COVID variants continue to spread while children under 12 are still unauthorized to receive the designated shot.
“The next question about will they stay open, that’s where we worry because when you have lots of kids, particularly every child under 12 has not been vaccinated. We see the delta variant being very transmissible,” Weingarten said. “School opening is really important. We need kids to be in school. We need everybody to be safe. We need to focus on accelerated learning and we need to focus on the emotional and social well-being of kids so that’s why I come down to where the APA and the CDC recommend, which is … we have to wear them to keep us safe.”