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What About This? By Wayne William Cipriano

By Wayne William Cipriano

I can’t believe that some parents in American school districts are tacitly accepting the idea of retroactive birth control by embracing the idea of sending students to school in the face of this raging Covid-19 curse, just to avail themselves of FREE DAY CARE.

Not all kids are catching it. Of those who do, not all show symptoms. Of those who do show symptoms, not all are very serious. Of those who do have serious symptoms, not all must be hospitalized. Of those who are hospitalized, not all will die. So, what are the chances of our Little Billy being one of the comparatively few unlucky ones? And of all the rest? Let the strong survive?

It is unfortunate that so many families believe they must have both adults at work to make financial ends meet. There is no choice for one-earner families. All feel that day care is a must during working hours. And public schools provide FREE DAY CARE.

When I mentioned this before, I truly expected it to become less important as the rates of infection, symptoms, and death went down as we as a country took the actions required to get Covid-19 behind us: MASKS, DISTANCE, HYGIENE. So much for that pipe dream.

I have not heard of a really effective therapy for Covid-19, but we have all heard of the several vaccines (95% effective or better, maybe long-lasting immunity) that have been produced at an astounding rate. Bless all those guys and gals that did that for us. Those vaccines will be here soon. In the meantime, let’s all do those smart things that protect ourselves and our children. Let’s not hurt our children “too much” in exchange for FREE DAY CARE.

And let’s not waste a lot of time bemoaning the lack of education that missing school will represent for students. If we really cared about education, we would have very high, inflexible standards to pass from one grade to another; frequent standardized testing to evaluate and ensure student progress; teacher compensation tied to student success; administration compensation tied to teacher success; school board retention tied to district academic success; and so on. Because, you know, that’s what we pay public schools to do.

As I mentioned above, most kids will escape the ravages of Covid-19. However, arguing that students in school are less likely to come down with Covid-19 than if they were mall-crawling, and so schools should remain open even in the face of escalating Covid-19 infections is like saying kids are less likely to be injured by lightning strikes than by inappropriately used firearms and thus kids should be encouraged to fly kites in thunderstorms to keep them busy and safe. 

FREE DAY CARE is a very nice, very practical, very convenient aspect of public school. But when a consequence of FREE DAY CARE in public schools is retroactive birth control, unintended or otherwise, even in only a few cases, FREE DAY CARE loses a lot of its glimmer.