It actually breaks my heart that for the 3rd year in a row our schools in Australia, and the gifted educators who run them, are faced with uncertainty. Our educators deserve better and the students and parents they serve definitely deserve better.
In an article I wrote in May 2020, I suggested that the Federal Govt and the PM were playing a dangerous game, and that they were underestimating their audience.
‘Parent’s may be struggling with having kids at home, but all it will take is for one new case in a region, or worst case, a school and the speed with which parents arrive to take their children home will be blistering.
The latest suggestions that schools can be back to normal in two weeks once again shows that neither the PM or his education minister have any idea how schools work.”
Now, almost 2 years later, schools are set to re-open while a report by parenting expert and writer Georgia Dent, a few days ago showed that 66% of parents are concerned about their kids going back to school. They are not fans of remote learning or lockdowns, but they are worried about their children.
And the irony of the current situation is that pushing to restart the economy is actually causing greater damage to the economy. Businesses are not closed because of lockdowns, supermarket shelves are not empty from shoppers stocking up. They are closed because their staff are sick and their customers are sick, because we don’t have a sound plan for opening safely. And supermarket shelves are empty because several links in the supply chain are broken, due to covid illness.
2 years. 2 years of lessons that haven’t been learned. 2 years of blaming other people for government failures. 2 years of demonising schools, teachers and other educators for trying to provide and maintain safe learning spaces.
2 years! And we still don’t know what is coming next.