American Federation of Teachers (AFT) President Randi Weingarten was ripped after hedging on whether or not U. S. schools would reopen in the fall during a Wednesday interview on MSNBC.
While having previously recommended that fully vaccinated individuals are not required to wear masks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reversed guidance following the spread of the new Delta variant of the virus, announcing that vaccinated people should return to wearing masks indoors and suggesting universal masking in schools.
Weingarten called the guidance a “curveball,” before suggesting that school reopenings this fall are not a done deal.
“So the bottom line is, we’re going to keep kids safe, we’re going to keep our members safe, we’re going to try to open up schools, and we’re going to move through this political battlefield,” Weingarten said.
Critics picked up on her comment about the reopening of schools because it sounded like backpedaling from when she argued in May that “we can and we must reopen schools in the fall.”
“Conditions have changed,” she said at the time. “We can and we must reopen schools in the fall for in-person teaching, learning and support. And we must keep them open fully and safely five days a week.”
‘We’re going to try,'” – and she’s citing the CDC mask decision as she wavers,” Fox News contributor Guy Benson said following Weingarten’s apparent flip flop.
Despite her claims that she had always advocated for the reopening of schools, Weingarten and teachers unions at large have been accused of dragging their feet. At times they said they didn’t have the capabilities to safeguard either children or teachers during the pandemic, although schools have repeatedly been shown not to be danger zones for widely spreading the virus.
Uncovered correspondence in May also revealed the AFT had been directly influencing the CDC’s school guidelines on the reopening of schools. For instance, the CDC was prepared to allow in-school instruction regardless of transmission rates, but appeared to backtrack on … (Read more)