McMaster and public schools

“People must go to work. …” Five little words from S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster demanding in-person school reopenings tell us a lot.

First, the words reveal why the governor is so hot and heavy to reopen. It’s all about jobs, parents’ jobs. Which leads into what he and the GOP really think about public schools: that public schools are just tax-funded day care centers, with education merely a byproduct, like crumbs that accidentally fall from the table.

The Post and Courier reports that McMaster called the spring’s virtual learning a failure, as if it was a grand experiment in learning the entire state tried two-thirds through a school year. He closed the schools, and rightly so, and the virtual learning, put together on the fly, was a heroic effort by administrators, IT personnel and, most important, teachers who broke unprepared-for ground to provide some educational continuity to students.

To call it a failure is both mean-spirited and ignoring why schools were closed in the first place — to protect the lives of students, teachers and all public school workers.

It seems to me that goal was a magnificent success. A success the governor apparently wants undone.



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