Report from Louisiana: Opening School

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – We are about five weeks from opening school in Louisiana, and teachers are beginning to get anxious. Certainly parents and students are as well, but teachers are natural planners and we like to know the lay of the land with as much advance notice as possible.

Districts across the nation have started releasing tentative plans, but we all know that could change on a dime. Most look like hybrid plans – part virtual school, part in-person. There are also all-virtual options for parents who don’t feel comfortable sending their kids back to school just yet.

I see a lot of concern about masks; both teachers and students are generally going to be expected to wear masks to school. I see lots of concern about social distancing, about number of students in a classroom, and about spacing kids out on the bus.

What I don’t see a lot of is concern for the teacher. In discussion threads I’ve been reading, many parents can’t wait to get their kids back to school, for a variety of reasons, and many seem comfortable that their kids will be safe. After all, it’s older folks who are mostly catching COVID-19, not young kids. We haven’t seen a lot of outbreaks in day care centers, I’m told.

Teachers across the country have a great deal of anxiety about returning to the classroom. There are a great many teachers near retirement age, or that are currently eligible to retire but just haven’t wanted to. These are the teachers expressing the most concern right now; many of us are caring for elderly family members or are in an at-risk group ourselves. Some of us live with immunocompromised people. So yes, we are invested in being certain that school opens safely.

From ABC News:

Some teachers around the country say they are nervous about returning because of underlying health conditions or concerns about infecting family members. Others say they are frustrated by the lack of clear guidance from officials about what’s safe. And for some, it’s about child care if their own kids are only back at school for a handful of days during the week.

The result is an inevitable clash between leaders pushing aggressive reopening policies in states like Texas and Florida and teachers, some of whom say local officials need to think more about what they are asking teachers to do.

There is so much conflicting information, it is difficult to believe anything or to truly know what is safe and what isn’t. After months of social distancing and stay at home orders, how can we just return to school with any degree of certainty that things will be safe?

Overall, a combined 54 percent of American voters said they are somewhat uncomfortable or very uncomfortable with reopening K-12 schools for the beginning of the coming school year, according to the latest POLITICO/Morning Consult poll that assessed the nation’s mood about students returning to day cares and schools shut down by the pandemic.

Some districts are offering either virtual learning or in-person learning that “almost totally” disregards CDC guidelines because social distancing won’t be possible and students might not be wearing masks, said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director of a school superintendents association.

“A lot of states along the Southern belt are just planning to move ahead with, all students, all come, and to me, that is going to be a horror,” he said.

And on the issue of masks, many school districts are recommending them but can’t mandate them unless they supply them. Or can they? How is it different than a mandated dress code? And what if a student refuses? What about students with asthma or other concerns?

So many unknowns.

And yes, we still have a few weeks. Things can change very quickly as we all know.

But I worry.

I worry about bring this virus into my home. I worry about getting sick, myself. I worry about exposing so many more people to the virus by opening schools and all that brings.  So many surfaces to clean! Where will all those Lysol wipes come from!? This is certainly a logistical nightmare for district decision-makers on so many levels.

What are your thoughts on the new school year? Would you be comfortable sending your kids into a public school in five weeks?

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport and is the author of Cane River Bohemia: Cammie Henry and her Circle at Melrose Plantation. Follow her on Instagram @patbecker25 and Twitter @paustin110.

DaTechGuy’s 3rd Law of Media Outrage and Secoriea Turner,

DaTechGuy’s 3rd law of media outrage states

The MSM’s elevation and continued classification of any story as Nationally Newsworthy rather than only of local interest is in direct correlation to said story’s current ability to affirm any current Democrat/Liberal/Media meme/talking point, particularly on the subject of race or sexuality.

Thus when a local cop in Minneapolis exceeded his authority causing the death of George Floyd it became national news.

However when the riots which broke out pretty much destroyed a chunk of Minneapolis, when a part of Seattle was taken over by Antifa these stories were downplayed and ignored (until POTUS pushed the 2nd forward) as were the 20 deaths attributable to said riots.

Make that 21

Police said Turner was riding in a car with her mother and her mother’s friend when they exited the interstate at University Avenue. The driver tried to turn into the parking lot at 1238 Pryor Road when he was confronted by an “group of armed individuals” who had blocked the entrance.

“At some point, someone in that group opened fire on the vehicle, striking it multiple times and striking the child who was inside. The driver then drove to Atlanta Medical Center for help,” police said in a statement.

Police said the 911 caller told them they were heading to Atlanta Medical Center with the victim. The child died at the hospital.

But the real news here isn’t the shooting of eight year old Secoriea Turner it’s how the BLM riot / protest deaths are being reported or not, as David Bernstein notes concerning another Black lives matter protest related death this weekend…

I had to go to an Australian news source to discover that the driver of the vehicle that sped into BLM protesters in Seattle is an African American. (Apologies if one of my colleagues at Instapundit covered this, I have been away for the holiday weekend.) I have to assume that American media outlets know this, and decided intentionally not to mention it to create the implication that this was a racist murder, rather than a guy driving recklessly on what he thought was an abandoned highway. I increasingly feel like I’m living somewhere akin to the former USSR, in terms of the way the media are dedicated to a particular narrative regardless of the facts. At least unlike in the USSR I can access alternative sources to our equivalent of Pravda.

He’s talking about the death of 24 year old Summer Taylor a white “non-binary” BLM protester who was run down while blocking a freeway by a black driver who likely didn’t anticipate a bunch of people protesting in the middle of it at 1:36 AM in the morning.

The murder of Secoriea Turner is a huge inconvenience to those who have gone all in on the protests being “mostly peaceful” (which is as accurate as saying my vegan soup recipe is “mostly unpoisoned” but the real question will be what happens next

If Black Lives Matter was true to its name, there would be as much global outrage over the death of eight year old Secoriea Turner, gunned down by anti-police protesters in Atlanta Sunday night, as there was for George Floyd….Or as Secoriea Turner’s tearful father, Secoriya Williamson, told local media in Atlanta, “They say black lives matter … but you killed your own this time. You killed a child. She didn’t do nothing to nobody.”

Of course, there won’t be any BLM protest marches held in honour of Jomo, little Secoriea, or any of the other innocents of any race slain in the ensuing crime wave.

No they won’t because highlighting her death would not cause sports leagues to funnel billions to the BLM front group to elect democrats in fact it might retard such cash. And of course there is the 4th law of media outrage:

The degree of media exposure of the corruption or illegality committed by any individual or organization under investigation is directly proportional to its distance from the media’s ideology.

Now I think the President won’t allow them to downplay this action by BLM but their media/democrat/blm left will do their best.

The truth is they don’t give a damn that Secoriea Turner was murdered, they just regret that it wasn’t done by someone who looks or votes like me.

THEN her life or rather her death would matter.

Update: Dad speaks out:

I predict that none of the money that the NBA, NFL or MLB gave to BLM will be spent remembering her, nor do I expect her name to be painted on any NBA court or her name worn on the jersey of any player as a social justice statement.

Although it would be nice