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CDC Admits It Based School Guidelines on Teacher Input and Stakeholders

CDC Admits It Based School Guidelines on Teacher Input and Stakeholders

Stakeholders. In other words, lobbying groups. Lobbying groups over parents and students.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) admitted during a press conference that it based its new school guidelines on science, but also input from teachers and stakeholders.

No wonder the guidelines pretty much give unions and schools an excuse to not return to in-person learning.

It’s weird how one week officials say schools should reopen and the next they come up with every excuse to keep it all closed.

The bipartisan group Open Fairfax County Public Schools in Virginia found a few interesting tidbits in the transcript of a press conference with the CDC.

Public health experts at Harvard University and Boston University blasted the guidelines in The Washington Post.

Overall, it looks like the CDC is also caving to public pressure regarding masks, hygiene, and social distancing.

The CDC plan has four color-coded levels:

The CDC defines four color-coded levels of the spread of covid-19 in a school’s surrounding community: blue (low), yellow (moderate), orange (substantial) and red (high). If community spread is red and if schools don’t have routine screening testing in place, two conditions that exist in more than 90 percent of the country right now, the CDC recommends closing middle and high schools, unless all mitigation strategies can be strictly adhered to, and hybrid models for young learners. If it is orange, middle schools and high schools join elementary schools in being able to go hybrid. In yellow or blue communities, all K-12 schools can be open for in-person instruction.

How do you get to the blue level? A school district qualifies for it “if they report about one daily case per 100,000” and only if it is “documents continuously for several weeks.”

The report “emphasizes hand-washing,” but the two professors noted that we do not have “a single documented case of covid-19 transmission through surfaces.”

“Shared air is the problem, not shared surfaces,” they pointed out.

The CDC brought up ventilation on page 13 in one bullet point. So the professors want to know why the CDC won’t talk about it more when the officials know that air transmission is a bigger deal than hygiene.

(So stop hoarding the Clorox and Lysol wipes)

Social distancing? Three feet for kids should be the limit:

Finally, the CDC emphasizes maintaining six feet of distancing, even between kids. But that ignores the science on children, transmission and the power of layered risk-reduction measures. One of us (Allen) and another colleague have recommended three feet of distancing for kid-kid interaction while keeping adults six feet from everyone else. Why? Because with masks, distancing is important, but not the key factor determining risk. As an example, hospitals don’t distance at all. Ultimately, this six-foot distancing rule is what will keep most kids out of school simply because of space limitations.

The science is clear: Kids — especially young children — can get and transmit covid-19, but they are less likely to do so than adults. Kids can die from the disease, but the risk of that happening is one in a million; they are about 10 times as likely to die by suicide. Teachers also have lower risk than other occupations and can be kept safe through adherence to universal precautions.

How about parents? I’m sick of people calling them lazy parents. If teaching was so easy I wouldn’t have gone to college for four years to become a teacher. The CDC disappointed many parents:

“Parents had grown progressively nervous that this was going to be a politically influenced outcome and that’s what it feels like we landed at,” said Karen Vaites, a mother who lives in New York City and is part of a group advocating for open schools.

She said mitigation strategies such as mandatory masks, which the CDC said were essential, make sense, but she views the requirement for six feet between students when rates are high to be too strict, and argued the CDC’s metrics for reopening are too conservative.

I documented the problems the Chicago Teachers Union caused for Chicago Public Schools. Like the CTU, the CDC keeps moving the goalposts.

Is it more for the lobbying groups and unions? In my opinion, I view it as power. People relinquished so much power to governments. Officials are not ready to give it up.

Education should be as local as possible on all levels. You cannot believe that a rural school district is the same as the New York City school districts. That is true when it comes to education and COVID-19 statistics.


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So politics, not science is how we pack CDC policy now. Seems like a bad idea to me.

    Haven’t they always been? Isn’t that why they were verboten from firearms “research”?

    henrybowman in reply to 2smartforlibs. | February 15, 2021 at 6:50 pm

    Hey! Politics IS a science! A settled science! That’s why schools give degrees in “political science.” Right?

      Kepha H in reply to henrybowman. | February 15, 2021 at 8:31 pm

      Having such a degree in “political science” and sometimes teaching government to high schoolers, I have a proposal. I was never comfortable refering to “political science”, when in fact it more “rigorous” methodologies have a way of shying away from important questions, neglecting to factor in possibly important variables, and forgetting waht a wondrous piece of work is man. I’d much prefer that the field were honest and called itself “political philosophy”. That way, it could claim an ancient pedigree going back to Plato, Confucius, and even portions of the Old Testament.

      But, come to think of it, witnessing the gorpes and fumbles of the experts as they try to come to terms with the c19 pandemic, to say nothing of the flip-flops, perhaps it’s time to start callling natural science “natural philosophy” once again. After all, “science” is just a fancy Latin word for “knowledge”, and now post-Kuehn and after Polanyi, we know that science itself is alway tentative.

        Dathurtz in reply to Kepha H. | February 15, 2021 at 8:48 pm

        They weren’t wrong about covid19 due to ignorance or incompetence.

        gibbie in reply to Kepha H. | February 16, 2021 at 10:33 am

        “That way, it could claim an ancient pedigree going back to Plato, Confucius, and even portions of the Old Testament.”

        But Plato and the Bible went out the window when Western Civilization was dropped from the curriculum. And the vast majority of college graduates have a very feeble grasp of what “science” is about.

        We need to utilize alternatives to the current disasterous K-PhD system. Now.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to 2smartforlibs. | February 15, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    So primary, maybe only transmission, occurs via air. When the swine flu hit I installed high intensity UVC lighting in my cold air returns and I ran the fan continuously, UVC disinfection kills all bacteria, virus and mold, and after that the air passed through a HEPA filter

I really didn’t understand why they want a nation of imbeciles. People have to work to pay taxes and in order to work at a job that actually pays taxes you have to have a basic education

This is beyond insane and parents need to demand their money back and form their own schools and demand use of them since apparently the school district has no intention of ever using them again.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to gonzotx. | February 15, 2021 at 9:01 pm

    “nation of imbeciles”

    Bottom line, immigration from countries with low average IQ dumbs down America and leads to lower competiveness.

Personally, I like the way the public school teachers are stupidly but accurately showcasing themselves as useless social appendages.

It seems to me that this is not at all about educating our future. Far from it, we are dumbing down the children in public educaton. I, for one, am appalled. I spent well over 30 years in the public schools as a classroom TEACHER. Not as a union member, not as someone’s lackey, but as a classroom teacher. I took my role as an EDUCATOR seriously and taught every student exactly as I wanted other teachers to teach my own children. Did I have success with every child? No but the vast majority of my students have gon on to become doctors, lawyers, educators, solid citizens, business leaders and even politicians. I did have a few who ran afoul of the legal system. I even had one who was tied up in a robbery gone wrong with a “friend” who shot and killed a store owner. Of course, he too was tried and convicted of murder. I received a letter from him apologizing for “letting me down since I was one of the few who believed he could be more than even his mother thought he could be”. It brought tears to my eyes and made me realize that there is hope in almost everyone. He took some online classes while in prison, went back and learned to be an electrician when he got out and is gainfully employed still today. He’s also working on restoring his reputation and has become a pillar in his church!
These teacher unions need to go back and listen to John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address and figure out what he meant when he said “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country!” Then they need to stop thinking like money-grubbing politicians!

    Katy L. Stamper in reply to 20keto20. | February 15, 2021 at 5:55 pm

    Good post.

    Is the keto working for you?

    henrybowman in reply to 20keto20. | February 15, 2021 at 6:40 pm

    “These teacher unions need to go back and listen to John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address and figure out what he meant when he said “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country!” Then they need to stop thinking like money-grubbing politicians!”

    Complaining that ANY political process doesn’t select for service and integrity is like complaining that the MMA tournament ladder process isn’t producing Jeopardy scholars.

    Dathurtz in reply to 20keto20. | February 15, 2021 at 6:58 pm

    I am 10 years in right now. Every single change that comes our way seems designed to make more kids fall through the cracks. Our education system is thoroughly compromised.

      Brave Sir Robbin in reply to Dathurtz. | February 15, 2021 at 9:11 pm

      I have been told by high school teachers I know who say they are starting to receive children who cannot even sign their own names now. They can only print them and have never been taught how to make a signature. I guess next comes “make your mark.”

      A great many cannot add, substract, or multiply without the use of a calculator. Even then, they quite often enter the wrong numbers, or numbers in the wrong order or sequence and get the answer wrong. They then argue with the teachers that their answer must be right because they used a calculator.

      I once thought a year away from the classroom would have devastating impact on our children. Now, I am not so sure. I think there will be little negative and possibly positive relative impact compared to having them in school.

        I can vouch for all of that.

        henrybowman in reply to Brave Sir Robbin. | February 16, 2021 at 10:37 pm

        Cursive evolved as a method of high-speed handwriting. If it disappeared tomorrow, I would not miss it. Other than literally signing my name, I haven’t used it in years.

        The kids of tomorrow won’t need to “make their X” — they’ll simply need to wave their RFID ID card, or push the “Pay” button on their phones. (In fact, their signatures will eventually not even be accepted for such transactions.)

        I realize that one could make a similar argument for not teaching them anything about the history of our constitutional government, when the government we have worked in an entirely unrelated way. But at least we have an incentive to attempt to return to what we should have, because it served a real purpose. Cursive? Not so much.

    wjf1939 in reply to 20keto20. | February 16, 2021 at 7:10 am

    There are 2 groups we can easily do without:


Katy L. Stamper | February 15, 2021 at 5:55 pm

The teachers are getting a pay check whether they are in a classroom or not.

That is the problem.

And as long as the teacher unions give generously to the dems, the dems will not solve the problem.

Kids are expendable to dems. As is everyone else in their way.

    Brave Sir Robbin in reply to Katy L. Stamper. | February 15, 2021 at 9:13 pm

    “The teachers are getting a pay check whether they are in a classroom or not.

    That is the problem.”

    I am all for paying them to stay away from our kids.

Lucifer Morningstar | February 15, 2021 at 6:11 pm

Time to tell the children they are going back to school. And way past time to tell the teachers that they are going to be teaching those children and if they choose not to return to work then they will be fired. Period.

Enough is enough with this nonsense.

The corruption is complete.

How does one rebuild a completely corrupt coalition of institutions governed by completely corrupt – and in the case of Pelosi – completely corrupt insane – politicians? Add a completely corrupt ‘news’ media and educational institutions?

The answer is: you don’t. You start over, and screen, screen, screen.

The Catholic High Schools in my old neighborhood in the SF Bay Area have had in classroom instruction since August with teachers handed out real grades. The public schools….nope. There are NO plans for high school students to be in the classroom and the lazy teachers are passing out pass/fail grades. Of course there are no sports for these kids either. It is a total tragedy.

    Dathurtz in reply to danvillemom. | February 15, 2021 at 7:34 pm

    When we shut down in march, we were still required to hold lessons, give assignments, and respond to student work. Of course, the state wouldn’t let us give grades or take attendance.

    My point is that teachers at my school were working like crazy, but most students knew none of it counted so they didn’t participate in any way. That isn’t the fault of the teachers or even the school, but the state directives.

    Of course, in some places the teachers might support such nonsense. It just isn’t the case where I am.

      Kepha H in reply to Dathurtz. | February 15, 2021 at 8:36 pm

      Indeed. I am a high school teacher, and give virtual instruction to those who really want to learn (yes, they’re out there). But, I am only grateful that I am not required to teach a straight-out ESOL or Chinese language class (two things I have taguth). I doubt seriously that much quality language learning beyond a few basics can be done if it’s not in-person.

        Dathurtz in reply to Kepha H. | February 15, 2021 at 8:54 pm

        Over the last year I have become convinced that none of us can effectively teach anything online.

        danvillemom in reply to Kepha H. | February 16, 2021 at 8:21 am

        I am glad there are some teachers that are actually teaching. That is not the case in SF bay area. One of my neighbors high school student only had one class (French 2) that was actually being held…the rest of the teachers could not be bothered. Another child had only an upper level English class. Last summer another Mom placed her son in a Christian summer school to repeat the math class that he missed out on. The students are the real losers.

          Dathurtz in reply to danvillemom. | February 16, 2021 at 8:34 am

          It seems to be an urban/rural thing. The urban districts just closed shop.

          Thankfully, we have not been virtual at all this school year, though some students have been. In my school, teachers were (and are) required to post video lessons, host zoom meetings for discussion, post assignments, and return work with feedback.

          It boggles my mind that if we can do this is rural Louisiana, then cities that actually have the infrastructure can’t. Hell, we have to print out packets for the “virtual” kids without internet and the busses delivered them.

Is there anyone with capital here? Seeing the numbers of academics, scientists, teachers, entertainment and media people, techies, and what not fired for not being PeeCee enough, couldn’t some new platforms and institutions be built to employ them, and, in so doing, keep Free Speech and free inquiry alive?

    Dathurtz in reply to Kepha H. | February 15, 2021 at 8:55 pm

    It isn’t enough to have capital. They would have to have an entire parallel economy.

      JusticeDelivered in reply to Dathurtz. | February 15, 2021 at 9:29 pm

      It is possible to create a parallel economy in baby steps. I came from a family of teachers, I also had an entrepreneurial streak, and that won out over teaching.

Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.

Tully Bascombe | February 16, 2021 at 4:12 pm

Teaching is easy, why else do you think so many dullards are education majors?

    Teaching is really easy compared to all the other things teachers are expected to do!
    –Father of two teachers and husband of one retired teacher

If they did not include parents and students, they misused the word “Stakeholders”!