RALEIGH – Imagine posturing for years about how you care more about education, especially for the underprivileged, than your political opponents, only to close schools and prohibit them from opening to educate even children with special needs. May we introduce you to Governor Roy Cooper?
Cooper’s reopening plan for schools is really an order to prohibit them from opening as normal, no matter how mild and mundane local COVID threats are, and that means children with special needs and handicaps too.
Yet, these are the children that arguably need in-person instruction and education the most. Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest says, while reiterating his support for opening all schools back up, that special needs students must be allowed to attend school under the governor’s plan.
From the Office of Lt. Gov. Dan Forest:
“All families should have the option to send their children back to school full-time. But at a minimum, a governor’s plan for reopening schools MUST allow for children with special needs and those with an Individualized Education Program (IEP) the ability to attend school.
These exceptional children depend on the public school system to afford them the therapy, services, and specialized instruction that only our trained and dedicated educational professionals can provide.
Anything less than giving these students and families the option to go back to school full-time is incomprehensible.”
These are the student populations that public-school-only activists often parade about to score political points for compassion (as if school choice advocates lack it). Where is the compassion by Democratic leaders now?
While these issues are political by nature, they are hardly petty talking points to be dismissed as inconsequential. Indeed, the negative effects of these open-ended disruptions to kids’ education are likely some of the most hurtful unintended consequences of the Pandemic Panic.
Hopefully Cooper leans toward the benevolent side of this virtual dictatorship we find ourselves living in and allows such students to attend school in person.