The Albemarle County Education Association (AEA) represents a frightened constituency. And, in their fear, they are attempting to upend rational school-reopening plans—all to the potential detriment of the families and students they are employed to serve.

A draft AEA resolution, copied below, favors the “more protected” status quo of learning-from-home and teaching-from-home for Albemarle County students and teachers, respectively.

The manifesto will be presented to the Albemarle County School Board for consideration at their September 24 meeting, to be followed by an October 1 get-together with the Board and the Superintendent, Dr. Matthew Haas, in order to discuss extant “concerns.”

Absent from the Association’s proposal is acknowledgement that:

  • Many division teachers are ready and willing to return to work (but are intimidated into silent acquiescence)
  • Division students—particularly minority and limited-English-proficiency—are suffering lasting subject-acquisition defecits as a result of the AEA’s self-focused demands
  • Families’ livelihoods are being negatively affected by the ongoing AEA-supported school shutdown
  • Students and families are being held captive to a failing education monopoly, many of whose primary instructors unreasonably are refusing to fulfill contractual and moral obligations

Under a right-minded policy, teachers who wish to return to work under reasonable circumstances should be allowed to do so.

Under a right-minded policy, students who wish to resume on-site, in-person instruction should be allowed to do so.

Teachers in disagreement with the AEA policy proposal should speak out.

Parents in disagreement with the AEA policy proposal should speak out.

Students in disagreement with the AEA policy proposal should speak out.

And ultimately, the Albemarle County Education Association’s fear-based power-play should be repudiated by Dr. Haas and the Albemarle County School Board—for the sake of those wish to recommence a semblance of normalcy in their lives and in their education.

Read the draft AEA resolution:

Whereas students and staff are more protected from Covid-19 when they learn and teach from home. 

Whereas recent research indicates that COVID-19 poses substantial risk to children, adolescents, and adults;

Whereas there are confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19 in our schools during the first week of Phase 2; 

Whereas unplanned shifts in our education plan may be detrimental to our students learning and staff morale; and

Whereas rapid testing with results within 48 hours is crucial to containing COVID-19 in schools;

Resolved, That the Albemarle Education Association supports transparent  benchmarks related to COVID-19 rates and testing availability before changing reopening stages.

Resolved, That the Albemarle Education Association opposes moving reopening Stage 3 until all of the following benchmarks are met:

  1. Below 3% positivity rate in the TJHD over the previous 14 days
  2. Less than 5 new cases per day per 100,000 residents in both Albemarle County and Charlottesville City over the previous 14 days
  3. At least 150 new tests per 100,000 residents per day over the previous 14 days
  4. District-provided tests for students and staff with a less than 48-hour results turnaround time

Resolved, That the Albemarle Education Association opposes moving reopening Stage 4 until all of the following benchmarks are met:

  1. Below 2% positivity rate in the TJHD over the previous 14 days
  2. Less than 3 new cases per day per 100,000 residents in both Albemarle County and Charlottesville City over the previous 14 days
  3. At least 150 new tests per 100,000 residents per day over the previous 14 days
  4. District-provided tests for students and staff with a less than 48-hour results turnaround time; and

Resolved, That the Albemarle Education Association opposes moving reopening Stage 5 until all of the following benchmarks are met:

  1. Below 1% positivity rate in the TJHD over the previous 14 days
  2. No more than 1 new case per day per 100,000 residents in both Albemarle County and Charlottesville City over the previous 14 days
  3. At least 150 new tests per 100,000 residents per day over the previous 14 days
  4. District-provided tests for students and staff with a less than 48-hour results turnaround time; and

Resolved, That the Albemarle Education Association will actively oppose any change in phases divorced from reasonable data benchmarks and the latest research on COVID-19 safety.

 

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