President Biden made an early pandemic show by promising that a majority of American schools would reopen in his first 100 days in office. But on Tuesday we learned that this depends on the meaning of the word “reopen.”
“His goal that he set is to have the majority of schools, so more than 50 percent, open by day 100 of his presidency and that means some teaching in classrooms,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday. “So at least one day a week.”
One day out of five? We doubt that’s how working parents define open.
Ms. Psaki is trying to make a virtue out of a humiliating political embarrassment. Mr. Biden figured that his support for the teachers union agenda, along with more money, would get the unions to reopen the schools. Instead he’s discovering what America’s parents have learned in the last year: Unions run the schools, and no one—not parents, not school districts, not mayors, and not even a new Democratic President—will tell them what to do. So it’s one day a week, pal. Get used to it.
This really is one of the great scandals of the pandemic. At first unions demanded that cases drop in their cities before schools open. Now cases are falling almost everywhere. So unions are insisting that teachers must be vaccinated before returning.