MontClairVoyant: This Column Features Support of Teachers

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
As debate rages over whether Montclair schools should partly reopen in hybrid mode during COVID, are you troubled by the anti-teacher words and actions we’ve been seeing from some in town?

Sincerely,
I.M. Irked

Yes. Our local educators work hard, are skilled at what they do, care deeply about their students, and know that “Goodbye, Mr. Chips” is about a teacher and not about a snack being exiled from Montclair for excessive saltiness.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Yet teachers and other school staff are getting grief from the superintendent, the Board of Education, and some parents for not returning to possibly unsafe classrooms before being vaccinated. Heck, the Montclair Education Association was even threatened with a lawsuit. Ugh?

Sincerely,
Union Street Blues

Ugh. A shame the thoughts of the superintendent and BOE turned litigious — a word that not only refers to lawsuits but to literature with religious elements, such as “The Bridge of San Luis Rey.” Or maybe that novel is about dentistry.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Don’t forget Montclair educators are doing a great job teaching remotely — not an easy task. They turned on a dime to start doing that last March, and improved at it during ensuing months. Can you provide specifics regarding those months?

Sincerely,
30-Somethings

Sure! March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December 2020, and January, February 2021.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
In-person learning is obviously best, but more widespread vaccinations are coming relatively soon. It would be different if no vaccinations were on the horizon and remote learning potentially stretched to another year or more, right?

Sincerely,
Post-Moderna-ism

Right. While vaccine distribution is often haphazard and unfairly prioritized (teachers should be earlier in the queue), it’s amazing that the vaccines were developed so fast. Even faster than Wile E. Coyote chased Road Runner, albeit with worse cartoon animation.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
What about the equity issue? Isn’t it far from ideal for socioeconomically disadvantaged students to be in remote learning all the time?

Sincerely,
Chromebook of Revelation

I hear you, but there are reports that socioeconomically disadvantaged families prefer remote over hybrid at a higher percentage than affluent white families in various towns; not sure about the Montclair stats. I AM sure that the word “socioeconomically” has more letters than the “Blondie” comic strip’s mail carrier after colliding with Dagwood Bumstead.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Why that remote-over-hybrid preference?

Sincerely,
Bess and Tess

The socioeconomically disadvantaged have been hit harder by COVID and have trust issues with institutions that often don’t treat them well. Yes, I guess one can address that the U.S. has been a hot mess, Bess and Tess.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Too much rhyming. What percentage of Montclair parents who want schools to reopen immediately would themselves work in significantly populated older buildings during COVID?

Sincerely,
Practice What’s Preached

Imaginary polling indicates 20.1 percent — as long as everyone else on site were cyborgs.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
What about opening windows in schools for more ventilation?

Sincerely,
Freda Pane

Can’t hurt, but there’ve been some bitterly cold days this winter. Heck, it was 14 degrees the morning of February 8 — just 12 more degrees than earned by teachers with bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Speaking of weather, what’s with all the snow this month?

Sincerely,
Winter of Our Discontent

I’m confident the white stuff will stop falling in August, but not sure about July. If Montclair has an Independence Day parade this summer, look for antique snowmobiles to putter down Midland Avenue.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Of course, one winter tradition is the Stupor…um…Super Bowl, which saw the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9 this past Sunday. Did anything unusual happen after the big game?

Sincerely,
The Brady Bunch

Other than the Chiefs being impeached for demanding that the National Football League give it 23 more points, no.

 

 

Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.

 

 

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