“They call me the working man. I guess that’s what I am.” — Geddy Lee
We returned today for the beginning rounds of teacher orientation. So far, it has gone about as well as can be expected. Judging by the masks for the staff, about twenty-five percent are continuing with the mask policies of the past year. As everyone is undoubtedly aware, the governor signed an executive order forbidding districts from having a mask mandate.
Additionally, the legislature did not provide funding for online educations, so most school districts are not offering it. Even those offering it are permitted to add more restrictions this time around. The district where I live enrolls students in their own program, so they are no longer a student at the brick and mortar school.
The district where I work is not allowing it. So, essentially they are not enforcing mask wearing, they will not force students or faculty to get the vaccine, and you cannot learn from home. Additionally, the TEA says that schools do not have to alert parents if someone in the school tests positive, and they do not have to do any contact tracing.
Additionally, students that have been in close proximity to students or faculty that tests positive do not have to remain home. Of course, some districts will continue to do what they did last year. Essentially, those districts have made no bones about going against the governor’s ruling and the guidance from the TEA.
I say all that to say this: take a few minutes to check out your local district’s policies as far as your children are concerned. That is especially true for those that have children under twelve. Also, while the governor said that we cannot mandate people to wear masks, we can certainly encourage it and I’d strongly encourage children under twelve to wear masks until such time as all children can safely be vaccinated.
Beyond that, we just have to hope for the best. We also have to remember these times when we vote in 2022. We have to remember that most of our legislators and statewide officials seem more concerned with who goes into what bathroom, who gets to play sports, and whether Cletus can shoot off his big toe. They honestly don’t care whether we live or die.