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On Thursday, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) announced that when in-person classes resumes this month, staff and K-12 students alike will be required to take weekly COVID-19 tests — even if they have been vaccinated.
The school district says the policy shift is based on guidance from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health after it reported that COVID-19 cases in the county had increased by 119 percent in the prior two weeks.
In an email to parents, LAUSD’s interim superintendent Megan K. Reilly stated that she believes the district “has the highest Covid safety standards of any public school district in the nation” after announcing that students and staff members will be subject to “baseline and ongoing weekly COVID-testing” beginning on August 2.
Reilly wrote that the district is “closely monitoring evolving health conditions and adapting our response in preparation for our full return to in-person learning on August 16.”
She added, “Los Angeles Unified continues to collaborate with our health partners at the county and state levels, as well as our panel of medical experts and university partners and we review updates to county, state, and federal guidance on a daily basis.”
While parents who do not want their children to attend on-campus classes this year had until Friday to opt out, ABC7 noted that remote learning in the district will “be slightly different this year.”
“Remote classes may not be taught by teachers from their current campus,” the outlet reported. “Instead, students will be part of an independent study program. Additionally, students who choose online classes may not be able to participate in extracurricular activities.”
Parents are asked to commit their students to a full semester of either online or in-person learning.
Perhaps the interim superintendent is proud that her school has the “highest Covid safety standards” of any district in the nation, but for those concerned about the continued attacks on civil rights that have been perpetrated by state entities since the start of the pandemic, this policy could easily be described as the “most extreme” rather than the “safest.”
Testing non-symptomatic children once a week is not only incredibly invasive from a physical and civil rights point of view, but it’s not even effective. COVID-tests are not always accurate and a child who tests negative on Monday could still just as easily pick up the virus by late Tuesday and spread it undetected throughout the rest of the week.
The LAUSD quickly devised this policy just as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reversed course on their mask recommendations for vaccinated individuals, and the Biden administration has signaled that they won’t rule out further lockdown measures and school closures — even as they began requiring similar vaxxing and testing mandates for federal employees.
With the school year starting in a matter of weeks for many school districts, millions of parents find themselves either unsure of the conditions under which their children will be learning and suddenly faced with the urgent decision as to whether or not they should pull them out completely.
It’s no wonder homeschooling is on the rise and likely to continue. Too many local school boards make their decisions only by reacting to what health bureaucrats and teachers’ unions are telling them to do today — which could easily be different next week. Parents and the unique needs of their children never seem to come into the decision-making mix.
And so as we enter yet another school year, parents who don’t have the ability to homeschool or access to alternative schooling options find themselves and their children to once again be the leverage that politicians, school board members, and teachers’ unions choose to use to drive forward their out-of-control push for control.