What happens when schools open up and a teacher gets sick or worse from the coronavirus?

A lot of people have framed it so that teachers have a choice, if they don’t want to go back they can always quit. I both reject and think we should be better than that especially since teachers proved last spring that even though it was far from optimal teaching from home was doable.

I mean we did right? Unless the powers that be want to declare last spring was a failure, and I get it, it did not work for a lot of ESE kids and for kids without or who rely on structure. This is my thought instead of risking everyone’s lives, shouldn’t we be taking this time to make distance learning better? Wouldn’t that be a better plan?

So society is on a collision course with restarting school and this despite the coronavirus is spreading like wildfire and I want to know if a teacher gets sick or worse what happens?

Can the teacher or family sue? I mean schools will knowingly be sending them into harm’s way.

If they or a kid gets sick or tests positive and they have to isolate for 14 days, does that come out of their sick leave bank?

Say a teacher gets sick at school, and they are out an extended time, or have to go to the hospital, is that on them? Do they foot the bills, lose all their PTO, go into the hole, or do districts who once again are knowingly sending them into harm’s way pick up the costs?

What about teaching if they are sent home. Whether they are sick or it is precautionary, are they going to be expected to teach? Follow up question, are the kids going to be expected to learn?

From Facebook, Then  What happens to our students when one of their teachers dies of Covid? Of course, I do not want to die. So, yes I am very concerned about getting Covid. But I also don’t want to see my students grappling with the death of school staff. Or their own classmates.

Schools should not be compared to daycares and it is insulting that they are being compared to them. If people need daycare, then the local, state, and federal governments should provide it, not our schools.

Teachers should not be required to risk their lives if they want to keep their jobs either. It’s shameful that is the position we are rushing to put them in.

What happens to teachers if they get sick or worse if the question nobody seems to want to answer.

6 Replies to “What happens when schools open up and a teacher gets sick or worse from the coronavirus?”

  1. We are being treated just like the folks that were forced to go back to jobs in meat packing plants.

  2. I agree that schools should not be compared to daycares but…. daycare workers are also at great risk perhaps even more that school teachers as the kids are generally younger and it is not possible to socially distance from them. Perhaps the comment was not meant to demean daycare providers but it really irritated me. I work in a childcare/ Head Start partnership and we have also been working hard at distance learning. To prove your point, which I agreed with, it was not necessary to infer that the work of Early Childcare professionals and our lives are of any less value than yours.

    1. I hope you know my point was not to to demean anyone. I feel for daycare workers/child care professionals as well anyone put in a needlessly dangerous situation.

    2. Perhaps I am rather sensitive about this because Early Childhood Education is often maligned, and believe me we are much more than just babysitters. This whole situation is tough for everyone and there are no easy answers.

  3. We have wasted months. We should have spent the last 3 months figuring out how to make distance learning better, more accessible, and securing resources for those who it didn't already work for. The "kids don't get it as bad as adults" line only works if kids live in a bubble and never come into contact with an adult, which isn't possible. Teachers, staff, bus drivers, lunch staff, parents, and anyone high risk that ever comes into contact with a child in a school will be risking death because we were too stubborn as a nation to try to improve online learning, expand access, and secure resources. You can't tell me that the federal government couldn't have invoked the defense production act for laptops purchased by the federal government for all schools that need them. That they couldn't order a free basic internet service for all homes that need them, then provide a tax credit to the internet providers for that service. That they couldn't expand unemployment with the extra $600 a week benefit so that families of school kids can stay home and keep their kids away from other humans. If the vaccine is really as close as the federal government claims, at most, this would mean fall semester from home. It's doable. Does it suck? Yes. Will there be things that need to be fixed? Absolutely. Will there be unhappy people? For sure. But will it save lives? 100%. There are millions of high risk people who have done everything we possibly can to stay safe for the past few months. Forcing schools back will be a death sentence for all of us. We are not collateral damage. We are human beings who's deaths are preventable with funded solutions. None of us wanted to be in this position, but we are.

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