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Teachers' Unions Don't Want Conn. Educators Going Back To Classrooms After Thanksgiving

Children Wear Masks
Seth Wenig

Teachers’ unions in Connecticut say the state should put stronger protocols in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in schools. If they don’t, they say schools should go fully remote through January.

Don Williams, executive director of Connecticut Education Association, the state’s largest teacher’s union, said schools in the state need more consistent protocols.

“That means knowing what happens when there’s a positive case, what the response is, the contact tracing. Having teachers and staff involved in the process and decision-making.”

The state lets local officials decide whether to use remote learning. Teachers’ unions say all but one of the state’s eight counties have virus levels high enough to require remote or hybrid learning under state guidance. But many schools continue to hold in-person classes full time.

Williams said teachers would rather stick with in-person education.

“But a pandemic raises other problems. As the virus spikes up statewide, we have to be mindful that the virus can spread through schools and into our community. And when we can’t stop that, or we can’t uphold these standards, then we need remote education.”

Governor Ned Lamont and the state’s education commissioner say schools aren’t a major source of COVID-19 transmission. Lamont says the state enforces precautions like social distancing and enforced mask wearing in schools. And they’re giving schools thousands of COVID-19 tests per week.

Davis Dunavin loves telling stories, whether on the radio or around the campfire. He started in Missouri and ended up in Connecticut, which, he'd like to point out, is the same geographic trajectory taken by Mark Twain.