Submitted by Patricia Flores-Charter
In some ways the We the Parents group’s foundational premise is ironic. The irony is that if parents were responsible and educating their students’ “moral and character foundation,” students would not be bullies, demeaning, disruptive and disrespectful. Students would be ready, excited to learn and respectful of teachers and each other. The reality is that despite best efforts of parental teaching, not all students display a moral and character foundation at school. This foundation is the behavior at home and school. They are not two separate entities.
Does Coronado have behavioral problems? (Yes, this is rhetorical.) If we didn’t we wouldn’t have assistant principals, time spent making calls to parent/guardians, collaborative consequences with parents, in-house suspension, suspension and expulsions. The only purpose of these is to educate students and modify their use of this moral and character foundation. If teachers didn’t do this, our classrooms would become the same as the CUSD board meeting on August 19 where the board president lost control in the meeting to an angry, yelling mob.
I taught for years in public schools. As teachers we have formal training in building this foundation in our mini societies. We create a safe environment like a family so learning can happen. We partner with parents in this. We were not the enemy. I retired in 2019 and it hurt my heart to read about this group. I hope this helps educate this well-meaning group on the false premise, assumptions and the reality of what will happen in our classrooms if they have their way.
This group also makes wearing a mask in school an issue. My daughter is an ER nurse. Here is my child working 12 hour days 5-7 days in a row with constant alarms of Covid patients coding. With Covid patients lined up in the halls waiting for a room. With ambulances lined up waiting to drop off a Covid patient. With unvaccinated patients saying they wish they had been. A doctor recently asked her what was wrong as she didn’t look good. She started crying and saying she wasn’t sure she could do this again…but she is. This is not spring 2020. This is now.
The truth is adults are choosing to be unvaccinated and unmasked over their own health and safety. So be it for adults. Children are another matter. Why would a parent choose infection of their child over wearing a mask at school? Is it pandemic fatigue, their perception of parental control, a democratic right over health and safety? The reality is parents lose all control when their child contracts this virus. I hope We the Parents and others like them will give this some thought and put kids’ health and safety first over their “choice” to not mask and that they demonstrate their good moral and character foundation to “love they neighbor as themselves.”