Win for Those Fighting Vaccine Mandate for School Staff in NYC – RedState

There have been massive protests out over the past few weekends in New York City against vaccine mandates. At least one of those massive protests involved teachers protesting against the requirement that they be vaccinated, organized by a group called “Teachers for Choice.”

Thousands came out and marched across the Brooklyn Bridge, also taking up the popular chant we’ve been hearing a lot of over the past few weeks, ‘F**k Joe Biden.’

Warning for graphic language:

But, now there’s good news for those fighting the mandates.

A federal appeals court just issued a temporary restraining order last night preventing the mandate from being enforced, just days before it was to go into effect on Monday. The requirement was that 148,000 teachers and staff would have to get at least a first dose of COVID vaccine by that date.

Now, a three-judge panel will consider the matter on an expedited basis. This is the first test of the city worker mandates that have been imposed in New York City.

Mayor de Blasio has said that he will pull in a lot of substitutes, if they are unable to enforce the mandate.

From AP:

As of Friday, 82% of department employees have been vaccinated, including 88% of teachers.

Even though most school workers have been vaccinated, unions representing New York City principals and teachers warned that could still leave the 1 million-student school system short of as many as 10,000 teachers, along with other staffers.

De Blasio has resisted calls to delay the mandate, insisting the city was ready.

“We’ve been planning all along. We have a lot of substitutes ready,” the Democrat said in a radio interview on Friday. “A lot is going to happen between now and Monday but beyond that, we are ready, even to the tune of, if we need thousands, we have thousands.”

The unions were not happy and had begged de Blasio to put off the date until the matter could be settled. UFT President Michael Mulgrew  and the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators President Mark Cannizzaro said they were “very, very concerned.”

The employees have until the end of Monday to “report their vaccination status” and if they haven’t gotten it, they wouldn’t be allowed into school on Tuesday.

All school employees — including cafeteria and school lunch programs workers — have until the end of Monday to report their vaccination status, and those who have not gotten a first dose will not be permitted to return the next day, leaving principals with little time to replace them.

The principals could then be greeted the next morning with personnel shortages across the board — teachers, teachers aides, paraprofessionals, nurses, cafeteria workers, custodians. Cannizzaro said principals were told Thursday that “the overwhelming majority of schools” may be opening with just one school safety agent.

“This is the nightmare scenario,” Mulgrew said.

So, this is great news that they’re holding off the mandate for now, but the city seems insistent on trying to blow up the system. If they lose before the three-judge panel, de Blasio is going to find out that it’s not as easy as he would like to think.





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Students lead prayer at high school football game after liberal group stopped teachers from doing so

With the FDA’s decision to officially approve the Pfizer COVID jab, calls to vaccinate schoolchildren and more university students will become louder and more insistent.

But, America’s children and young people must be protected from unknown future side-effects of these drugs, and parents’ rights must be respected!

Please SIGN this urgent petition which demands that COVID vaccine mandates for schools and universities be prohibited in every U.S. state.

This petition will be sent to the leaders of every state legislature and to every governor in the United States, urging them to pass emergency legislation banning vaccine mandates for primary, secondary and university students.

Students simply have the right to be educated without being forced to violate deeply held principles and their own bodily integrity!

But, unfortunately, some private schools, like the Jesuit-run Brophy College Prep School in Phoenix, Arizona, have already mandated the COVID vaccine for their students, in spite of massive parental opposition. If parents or students reject the vaccine, students face intrusive weekly testing and exclusion from extra-curricular activities.

Also, more and more universities have actually started to disenroll unvaccinated students. But, even where that is not happening, not taking the vaccine often subjects students to masking, extra testing and additional administrative obstacles.

And now, with the Pfizer jab approval, Joe Biden’s Surgeon General, Vivek Murthy, is threatening more mandates.

While it is true that the FDA approval for the Pfizer jab only pertains to those over 16 years of age, the pharmaceutical industry and some state actors have been pushing to get approval for pre-teens!

So, it stands to reason that the Federal government will try to impose vaccines on schools, for those 16 and over, as well as on all university students. But, eventually, such mandates could even apply to younger and younger schoolchildren.

That’s why state legislatures and governors must fight back against any attempt to coerce school students to take a COVID vaccine against their will!

Science and logic should dictate public health policy. And both say that mandatory vaccination for children and university students is not only unnecessary, but very likely dangerous for the future health of America’s youth.

The CDC reports that the rates of death, injury, and hospitalization are very, very low for children and adolescents and that COVID transmission in schools, both from student to staff and between students, is also very low.

And a European CDC study concluded that “no evidence has been found to suggest that children or educational settings are primary drivers of COVID transmission.”

So, right now, we know that schoolchildren are at very low risk of becoming very ill as a result of COVID, or of even transmitting the virus.

But, we don’t know how a hastily-prepared, unstudied vaccine will affect the health of millions of America’s youth in the future.

Gambling with their future, and the future of our nation, should not even be entertained for one second!

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition urging state legislatures to ban COVID vaccine mandates for schools and universities – both public and private. Urge them to respect parents’ rights, informed consent and bodily integrity.

Thank you!

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

‘Ivy League schools mandate COVID-19 vaccines for fall’ – https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/ivy-league-mandates-covid-19-vaccines-for-the-fall/

‘FDA approval of Pfizer jab isn’t about our health, it’s about mandating the shots’ – https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/fda-approval-of-pfizer-jab-isnt-about-our-health-its-about-mandating-the-shots



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San Diego Teachers Union Passes Resolution That Rejects Israel’s Legitimacy

Accuses Israel of war crimes, ethnic cleansing

A pro-Palestinian protest sign (Adam Berry / AFP via Getty Images)

Alana Goodman • September 23, 2021 5:00 am

The San Diego chapter of the American Federation of Teachers passed a resolution this month rejecting Israel’s legitimacy as a country and accusing the Israeli government of carrying out ethnic cleansing, apartheid, and war crimes against Palestinians.

In the resolution, AFT Guild Local 1931, which represents community college teachers in San Diego, refers to Israel as “historic Palestine” and calls on the Biden administration to “hold Israel accountable for its complete disregard of international law” and implement a “prompt reassessment of military aid to Israel.”

The statement does not mention Palestinian terrorism. It argues that Israel’s “indiscriminate bombing of the Gaza Strip has claimed a significantly greater and disproportionate number of Palestinian lives and destroyed essential infrastructure in the already oppressed occupied territories.”

The resolution comes as hate crimes against Jewish Americans are on the rise and progressives across the United States ramp up a campaign of delegitimization and economic pressure against Israel. On Tuesday, House Democratic leadership removed funding for Israel’s missile defense shield from its spending bill, in response to protests from progressive lawmakers.

AFT national president Randi Weingarten told the Times of San Diego she was “troubled” by parts of the resolution but had no control over the chapter’s decision. The Anti-Defamation League called it “unconstructive and potentially detrimental to San Diego area students, parents, faculty, and administrators.” A local Jewish group also condemned the resolution.

“We are concerned about many aspects of this statement and the misrepresentations and omissions throughout, and in particular that it questions Israel’s fundamental right to exist,” Heidi Gantwerk, the interim president of the Jewish Federation of San Diego County, told the Washington Free Beacon. “More importantly, we are deeply troubled by the negative climate this creates on these campuses. Jewish and Israeli students, faculty, and staff should feel safe and welcomed wherever they choose to teach and learn. Sadly, many now feel singled out, threatened, and anxious. Federation and our partners are committed to supporting all aspects of Jewish life in San Diego, and that includes at our institutions of higher learning.”

The AFT local guild resolution denounced Israel’s “73-year occupation,” a reference to the creation of the Jewish state in 1948. This claim goes beyond the accusations of many of Israel’s harshest critics, who trace the “occupied territory” dispute to the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

The union also defended itself against charges of anti-Semitism, claiming that “condemning Israel for its ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, occupation, apartheid, and war crimes is not anti-Semitism.”

Some members of the guild objected to the resolution and expressed concern that it would encourage hate crimes against Jews, according to meeting notes from the Sept. 5 vote obtained by the Free Beacon.

One dissenter said the statement was “factually inaccurate and takes much out of context” and added that it could “provoke and give people permission to engage in anti-Semitism.” Another member said “Israel has the right of self-defense” and called the resolution “an anti-Semitic hate crime.”

Supporters of the resolution rejected these arguments, with one claiming that “conflating Israel and Judaism is anti-Semitic,” according to the meeting minutes. Others accused former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu of “openly advocat[ing] for the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians” and “engaging in a settler colonial project in line with historical colonialism.”

The guild’s president Jim Mahler did not respond to requests for comment. The National ATF did not respond to a request for comment.





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Quarantined L.A. Schoolkids Have Lower COVID Rates Than Vaccinated Teachers – Reason.com

If you got your pediatric COVID news from New York Times science and public health correspondent Apoorva Mandavilli, you might be under the mistaken impression that (as Mandavilla asserted Monday) “the reopening of schools has fueled the [recent] surge,” and that “children are as likely as adults to transmit the virus to others, and more likely to do so than adults older than 60.”

Neither of these claims are supported by the evidence.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the rise in U.S. COVID hospitalizations began on June 28 (when the rate was at 0.56 per 100,000 residents), or precisely when most schools were closed for the summer. The rate then steadily climbed to 3.73 per 100,000 on August 27, at which point three-quarters of K-12 schools had flung open their doors. Now that the remaining 25 percent of schools have started the 2021-22 school year, hospitalizations are steadily sinking, down to 2.94/100,000.

As for children being “as likely as adults,” and more likely than senior citizens, to transmit the virus, that sentence would be balderdash even after inserting the woefully missing qualifier “infected.” As the CDC lays out in its school recommendations, students, proportionately, are not the ones spreading COVID inside school buildings: “[S]taff-to-staff transmission is more common than transmission from students to staff, staff to student, or student to student,” the agency noted. “Findings from several studies suggest that SARS-CoV-2 transmission among students is relatively rare.”

Mandavilli’s shoddy article, dissected at hyperlinked length in this Twitter thread, deployed such pediatric scaremongering in the service of adding outside pressure to the Food and Drug Administration process of approving under-12 vaccinations. But a more accurate depiction of COVID and schools could be used to fix a policy error that’s negatively affecting families right now: excessive school quarantine policies.

As has been clear since August, the single most important dataset involving kids and COVID would be coming out of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), which is testing a half-million combined students and staff each week, regardless of vaccination status, at a cost of $350 million in 2021-22. Far from fueling any surge, let alone showing evidence of “superspread,” these numbers overwhelmingly indicate that schools are safe and being overcautious.

The “baseline” rate of infection, taken from the two weeks before school, was 0.8 percent for students, 0.6 percent for staff. From that low starting point it has inched steadily down, as have pediatric hospitalizations, and overall community spread. No fuel, no surge.

To the contrary. A study released on September 16 by Los Angeles County contains two remarkable findings: 1) Students, most of whom are not vaccinated, have a lower positive rate than teachers and staff, most of whom are. And 2) the positive test rate among students who are quarantined because a classmate tested positive is a microscopic 0.2 percent. Here is the relevant section:

In K-12 school settings countywide, between August 15 and September 13, 7,995 student cases and 1,193 staff cases were reported, with the vast majority occurring at LAUSD, which tests everyone weekly. With more than 1.5 million students and 175,000 staff countywide (by last year’s counts), 0.5% of the student body and 0.7% of staff have become infected since school districts reopened. This is slightly higher than the 0.4% rate of infection experienced overall in the County. Given the massive testing of asymptomatic individuals at schools, this very low rate of infection affirms the safety provided to students and staff at schools.

Close contacts that are not fully vaccinated, are subject to quarantine for up to 10 days after exposure to a case. Between August 15 and September 13, 15,655 student contacts and 1,056 staff contacts have been reported, with an additional 22,650 close contacts of unknown status reported, most of them suspected to be students. In total, nearly 2% of all staff and students countywide have been identified as a close contact of a case. Data to date indicates that very few of the identified close contacts have subsequently tested positive. As of last week, among the almost 30,000 people quarantined, 63 tested positive; this amounts to an overall secondary attack rate of 0.2%.

(Note: L.A. County, with its 88 cities, is home to 10 million people, 4 million of whom live in Los Angeles proper. The LAUSD includes some kids from outside city limits, and educates a bit more than 40 percent of the county’s students overall. Also, Southern California governance is a confusing mess.)

In response to this overwhelmingly good news, the county has announced a “modified quarantine” system, whereby potentially exposed students can stay in class if they are asymptomatic and test negative twice within the ensuing seven days. This “test to stay” protocol treats quarantining as a problem more of information than infectiousness, while acknowledging the educational inadequacies and familial disruptions of remote learning.

Such insights, perhaps coupled with anxiety over declining (albeit aggressively unreleased) enrollment numbers, prompted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to announce Monday that unvaccinated asymptomatic kids will no longer have to automatically quarantine after exposure, in part because testing of the non-vaxxed will be ramped up to weekly. “We saw enough quarantining that we thought this is something we want to get ahead of, and make sure that only those who really need to quarantine are quarantining,” de Blasio said.

In both NYC and L.A., the biggest critics of the test-to-stay policy change are the same who did the most to keep public schools closed for most of 2020-21: teachers unions.

“We strongly disagree with the mayor’s plan to limit the quarantine process only to some children rather than an entire classroom,” New York’s United Federation of Teachers (UFT) tweeted yesterday. “Children—particularly the youngest who are most vulnerable to the Delta variant—need more protection than the Mayor is offering with this recent, ill-considered decision.”

United Teachers Los Angeles, meanwhile, has not indicated whether it will agree to L.A. County’s modified quarantine policy, even though the district is alone among all big-city systems in mandating vaccines for all eligible students.

It is astonishing, at this very late date, that so many Americans are unaware what an outlier the United States is on school reopening and masking young children. It is appalling that people who certainly know better, such as the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy Director Michael Osterholm, are saying such scaremongering nonsense as, “the fact of the matter is that this is killing kids right now at a rate much, much, much higher than our worst severe influenza years.” (The 2017-18 flu season killed an estimated 172 children in five months; COVID has killed 146 children since April.)

And it is a miserable reality, if no longer quite surprising, that some elite journalists have done such a piss-poor job giving families and policymakers usable, contextual, and numerate information on which to base crucial decisions. At some point this school year, test-to-stay policies will replace excessive quarantining in all but the most union-dominated of districts. When our kids’ 18-months-and-counting nightmare finally comes to a close, here’s hoping a whole bunch of adults take a good long look in the mirror.





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HS football team leads community in post-game prayer after school board tells coaches and teachers they no longer can: ‘Satan’s power was defeated tonight’

After a school board in Tennessee told coaches and teachers they could no longer lead students in prayer, a high school football team stepped up in a big way to support religious freedom — and people from across the country are taking notice.

What happened?

Putnam County Schools administrators informed faculty and staff last week that moving forward they would be prohibited from leading students in prayer, WZTV-TV reported.

“The case law not allowing prayer or proselytizing is clear. Courts have consistently ruled that prayer and proselytizing can not be sponsored by schools or school personnel,” administrators said in the memo following a complaint issued by Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

The anti-religious freedom group had moaned that several instances of “prayer and proselytizing” had occurred at events at Cookeville and Upperman high schools, making reference to the regular occurrence of prayer following high school football games.

In a statement to the local news outlet, administrators added: As a district, we absolutely understand the importance of prayer in the lives of our students, faculty, and staff members. We support the right of students to participate in and lead spontaneous prayers. That right is and will continue to be protected.”

But, the board added, “We also understand that faculty and staff members can not lead or participate in the spontaneous student-led prayers.”

What was the response?

The new anti-prayer rule sparked immediate outrage in the community and prompted parents to organize a show of support following Upperman’s game against Stone Memorial on Friday night.

“We do realize this is a public school, but it has always been optional for players to pray, and has been a voluntary event. Players that still want to pray will have to do it on their own,” one parent, Dustin Whitefield, wrote to WZTV.

“After the game, players and cheerleaders that choose to will be on the field praying on their own. A group of parents will be going out on the field to support them,” he said. “We will join hands and encircle them from a distance as a sign of protection and solidarity in choosing to continue to pray. This is a parent-led event! We are encouraging anyone that would like to show their support to please join us.”

The demonstration went according to plan. After Friday’s game, scores of parents and fans gathered on the field and surrounded a large group of players from both teams. According to WZTV, the courageous players stepped up to lead the parents and fans in corporate prayer.

Anything else?

News of the demonstration quickly circulated after photos of the event were posted and spread on social media. Several responded with support and admiration.

“Satan’s power was defeated tonight,” one Putnam County Schools alum and fan wrote on Facebook.

“As the threat of a legal action to forbid prayer after the game was overwhelmed by player lead prayer supported by parents and fans in solidarity on Overall Field. God bless the Baxter and Stone players for their faith and courage,” he added.

Many others chimed in with well wishes and support, saying, “Amen,” “Praise God,” and “Hallelujah!”


Coaches, teachers can’t lead students in prayer

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What To Do About Public Schools? – RedState

The argument that the rage exhibited in the streets of cities around the country in the summer of 2020 — where a billion dollars worth of damage was done and symbols of government and authority were targeted — was carefully incubated and nourished in American schools for years is gaining traction outside the wonky world of white papers and policy analysis.

Parents Defending Education (PDE) has made it very easy for parents and concerned citizens to bolster that argument by merely paying attention to and reporting what they’re seeing. One look at a recent post at their website should have anyone who’s been paying attention struck by the similarities in the rhetoric and tone used by antifa and Black Lives Matter over the summer of 2020 in cities like Portland and Seattle. Be sure to visit the site itself to see the photos this parent submitted.

A parent with a student at Alexander Hamilton High School contacted Parents Defending Education to complain about what he called the “disgusting brainwashing of students with taxpayer dollars.” He attached the photos below. This school is part of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD).

In the first photo, an American flag appears to be strewn atop a piece of classroom piece of furniture. Those hanging include the Palestinian flag, the transgender flag, a Black Lives Matter flag and “the modern PRIDE flag.”

The second photo speaks for itself.

While it’s fantastic an organization such as PDE exists now and is blowing the whistle on what’s been happening in public schools, it’s disturbingly obvious these kinds of classroom tactics have been going on for years. A great number of those arrested during the 2020 riots were well past high school age.

As Chris Rufo reported this past Spring for the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal, “public schools are training children to become race-conscious revolutionaries.”

The City of Portland, a cloud-covered metro on the south bank of the Columbia River, has become known for its political protesters. Anarchists, Communists, ecofascists, and various other agitators regularly denounce the police, politicians of both parties, and America itself, and flag-burning has become part of the protesters’ liturgy. Last summer, protesters associated with Antifa upped the ante with chants of “Death to America” and participated in months of violent protests to avenge the death of George Floyd while he was in police custody in Minneapolis. Children as young as four marched with the crowd to the federal courthouse, raising the Black Power fist and chanting “Fuck the Police!”

Famously the “whitest city in America,” Portland has become the unlikely headquarters of race radicalism in the United States. The city has elevated white guilt into a civic religion; its citizens have developed rituals, devotions, and self-criticisms to fight “systemic racism” and “white supremacy.” The culminating expression of this orthodoxy is violence: street militias, calling themselves “antiracists” and “antifascists,” smash windows and torch the property of anyone transgressing the new moral law.

By perpetuating the narrative that America is fundamentally evil, steeping children in race theory, and lionizing the Portland rioters, they have consciously pushed students in the direction of race-based “revolution.” In the language of the Left, the political education programs in Portland-area districts constitute a “school-to-radicalism pipeline”: a training ground for child soldiers. This is not hyperbole: some of the most active and violent anarchist groups in Portland are run by teenagers, and dozens of minors were arrested during last year’s riots. These groups have taken up the mantle of climate change, anticapitalism, antifascism, and Black Lives Matter—whatever provides a pretext for violent “direct action.”

It’s heartening to see think tanks like The Heritage Foundation begin to push back by producing free ebooks that seek to inform parents and teachers how to recognize some of the theories behind the radicalism, Critical Race Theory being the most prominent. But the reality is there’s a problem in American public schools that lies not just with the curriculum but with the teachers promoting it. It’s one thing to foster an environment of free expression — which is how the LA Unified School district brushes off criticism of the wall art at Alexander Hamilton High School — but when a school’s curriculum leads to violent revolutionaries tormenting innocent citizens for months on end and causing fellow Americans to foot the bill for their shenanigans, it’s well past time to address whether or not that free expression is being perverted in the interest of building an army of hostile, anti-liberty revolutionaries.





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School Custodian Shocked as Teachers Surprise Him with Car

Chris Jackson is a head custodian at Unity Grove Elementary School in Locust Grove, Georgia, and he loves his job. He makes a sincere effort to do his best work, and his work ethic has not gone unnoticed.

“Chris is one of those co-workers that whatever you need, he’s going to make it happen,” Jodi Combs, one of the teachers at the school, told Fox News. “The kids adore him, the teachers adore him. And he works so very hard.”

Jackson had experienced some hard times lately, and his current mode of transportation was by foot. It was frustrating for him, as he liked to do things quickly and efficiently, but he pushed through and persevered.

When Combs and another teacher, Megan MacDonald, found out about his hardships, they wanted to help. They knew he was trying to earn enough money to buy a car, so they wanted to aid him in that goal.

First, they fundraised $1,000 in their community and gave him some of that for his immediate needs. Then they started working toward the big goal of a vehicle.

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Everything came together in a providential way when one of MacDonald’s friends listed an older car for sale. MacDonald told Combs, “Let’s make this happen for Chris.”

They went to work fundraising again, this time by way of a private Facebook group, and within the day they had enough cash to make the purchase.

“We were completely blown away. Everything fell into place,” Combs said.

It was during lunchtime that Combs and a few others asked Jackson to come to the parking lot to “help them with something.” They approached the car, a Chevy Impala, and then Combs plopped the keys into Jackson’s hand.

He was stunned.

Not only was he overwhelmed with the generous gift, but unbeknownst to the teachers, an Impala was his dream car.

“I’ve loved Impalas since I was a baby!” he said, according to a Facebook post by Kaitlyn Ross 11Alive.

“There is a God, oh my stars,” he adds in the clip that has been shared and has gone viral. “Thank you, thank you all. I thank you all.”

Related:

Banking Firm That Lost 66 Employees on 9/11 Pays for All Their Children to Go to College

“I never would have dreamed of something like this. This … this is mind-blowing to me.”

“His reaction was priceless,” Combs said.

He’s excited to have wheels, and said the first thing he was going to do was go visit his mother.

Not only was the gift the rest of the money he needed to buy the car itself, but the title, tag and insurance were covered. At first, the teachers only had enough money to cover part of the insurance, but a kind person who saw the viral clip offered to pay the rest.

“That’s not unusual for our school,” Principal Anne Wilson said. “Any time we know of a need, people just come flooding to help … I’ve been here 20 years as principal and it’s always been that way.

“People unify around each other, around people in times of need and in times of joy. It’s a real blessing to work here.”

“I want people to know that this is not just me or this is not just one teacher,” Combs explained. “This is a whole lot of people that have huge hearts that came together to make this happen.”

“We can talk about the video and have a laugh, but that was one of the greatest moments of my life,” Jackson said. “And no one can take that from me.”

Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she’s strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.

As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn’t really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she’s had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children’s books with her husband, Edward.

Location

Austin, Texas

Languages Spoken

English und ein bißchen Deutsch

Topics of Expertise

Faith, Animals, Cooking



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Mass. teachers union says standardized tests have allowed ‘white supremacy to flourish’

A teachers union in Massachusetts claim the state’s standardized testing has “allowed white supremacy to flourish.”

The Massachusetts Teachers Association wants to strip the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) as a part of graduation requirements for students.

“The implementation of the MCAS and other standardized tests has had the exact opposite effect of what was supposed to occur when the system was introduced more than 20 years ago,” said MTA president Merrie Najimy in a statement.

The union is backing a bill to give students “multiple pathways” to show their educational competency apart from the MCAS standardized testing.

“Public schools in predominantly Black and brown communities have been taken over by state bureaucrats who have been using standardized testing as a tool not to improve opportunities for students,” continued Najimy, “but instead as one to pry public education from the hands of the families and educators who know best what their students need.”

Najimy and the MTA had opposed MCAS by calling for their cancellation over the coronavirus pandemic.

“Once you get past this year, it’s gonna be a real critical time to reimagine what could be, which means really thinking about bringing in more school quality measures and new ways to judge how our schools are doing,” said Najimy in January.

Critics of standardized testing say their are biased against minority and disadvantaged children.

“You have these third-party vendors creating these tests for school districts and states, and states are forced to implement them,” said Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) in an interview about standardized testing.

“So it made a lot of people a lot of money. But then the charter school industry is also part of that money train as well because the tests have been weaponized against teachers and schools and teachers’ unions,” he explained. “The more you say a teacher is bad and a public school is bad, the more momentum you have to close that school. And when school’s close, charter schools open.”

Bowman specifically says shutting down standardized testing is aligned with his effort for “racial justice.”

Others say standardized testing allows the government to identify low performing schools in order to improve education for minority and other underserved students.

“The primary purpose of education reform in Massachusetts was and is equity. MCAS shines a light on how much students are learning,” argued Professor Paul Reville, who formerly served as the state’s secretary of education.

“It highlights those Black, brown, and other students who are being failed by our education system,” he added. “It calls attention to their challenges and provides a rationale for giving teachers support they deserve to help their students meet high standards.”

Here’s more about the MTA opposing standardized testing:


What to expect from this year’s MCAS testing

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Teachers flood NYC streets to march against vaccine mandates

Hundreds of teachers and other protesters marched across New York City’s Brooklyn Bridge on Monday, rallying against the newly enforced vaccine mandate put in place by Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The anti-vaccine mandate rally was organized by a group called “Teachers For Choice” which focuses on the rights of educators and opposes any medical mandates affecting their employment. According to their website, members of Teachers For Choice “are 100% against forced medical mandates for any American to keep their job, especially educators…there are many other medical mandates that are coming soon, and we stand in opposition TO ALL OF THEM!”

Hundreds of New Yorkers attending the rally were seen holding signs and chanting slogans like, “I am not property of the state” and “I call the shots.”

Protesters chant anti-vaccine mandate slogans during NYC rally.

Anger has grown among the city’s educators after de Blasio announced last month, that all Department of Education employees must receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by Sept. 27. The new mandate will apply to all Dept. of Education staffers in the city.

During an interview with PIX11, educator Alycia Morell said, “I came with a bunch of teachers from a school in Whitestone, Queens. We’re here because of the mandates.” Morell added that some of the protesters are indeed vaccinated, but said they’re fighting the mandate and they don’t want the children to have to be mandated for vaccines — so they’re fighting for everybody, not just themselves.

Wade Willett, a recently retired science teacher who attended the rally, said he submitted his retirement on Aug. 8 because of the mayor’s policy. “I had COVID in March of 2020 and I recovered from it, so I felt I’m immune,” Willett told the outlet. “I’m a science teacher and they said, ‘you’re not.’”

The city’s newly enforced mandate doesn’t only affect teachers, but it will also affect a large number of businesses within the metropolis. Beginning this week, places such as restaurants, museums, gyms, movie theaters, concert venues, and many more, will be forced to verify the vaccination status of all who enter.

Controversial vaccine mandates throughout the country have caused an uproar not only with teachers, but with medical personnel, military service members, government employees, and many other professionals who are being threatened to either vaccinate, or lose their jobs.

As for the educators in New York City, it seems they’ve only begun to fight. “Teachers for Choice” said they will file a lawsuit this week against the city for its vaccine mandate.



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Judicial Watch Fights for Jan. 6 Videos, Exposes The CDC’s Connection to Teachers’ Unions

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Judicial Watch: CDC Records Show Teachers Unions Gave Guidance to CDC Director on School COVID Restrictions

Judicial Watch announced that it received 12 pages of *records showing the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and National Education Association (NEA) influencing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director and the White House with their own “embargoed vaccine research,” as well as school reopening policy. Additionally, the CDC Director states that she used the unions’ language in the CDC’s school reopening policy.

Judicial Watch Asks Federal Court for Discovery in Lawsuit against U.S. Capitol Police for January 6 Videos

“As the Pelosi House seeks the confidential phone and social media records of countless Americans concerning January 6, its U.S. Capitol Police is covering up 14,000 hours of video about what really happened that day,” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The U.S. Capitol Police should be required to explain under oath its reasons for refusing to turn over even one second of January 6 video to the American people.”

Corruption Chronicles


“Refreshing” Curriculum with “Antiracist Design Tenets”—U.S. Invests Millions to Bring Racial, Ethnic Equity to STEM Education

Weeks after giving a private college hundreds of thousands of dollars to “identify any existence of systemic inequities” in science, technology, engineering, and math fields (STEM), the U.S. government is doling out nearly $2 million to address racial and gender disparities in high school computer education.

Issue Deep Dive


The Texas Pro-Life Law

Texas’s heartbeat law is “a great development for the rule of law [and] for our nation’s morality and ethics,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton explains in the Weekly Update. As Fitton notes, the Left’s “apoplectic” reaction to the law is perhaps of little surprise to those who have actively engaged in the fight to protect the unborn. The law allows private citizens to bring civil actions over violations of the law which prohibits abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected.

In The News


AXIOS: Biden Takes His Shot

President Biden says he’s met the enemy — and it’s America’s unvaccinated. The majority of U.S. sentiment may be with him. But Biden’s still taking a major political risk, and he and his team know it. He’s testing business leaders’ resolve, putting Democrats’ standing in swing states and districts on the line ahead of 2022’s midterm elections and tempting a tsunami of litigation over new requirements that could touch 100 million Americans.

“The Biden White House previously said that the federal government had no role mandating vaccines, said Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch. “I suspect statements like this can and will be used in court against this unprecedented federal power grab.”

FOX Business: Gates Foundation helped ‘raise China’s voice of governance’ in Africa, emails show

“Microsoft founder Bill Gates‘ international foundation has helped the Chinese Communist government in various ways, according to a newly-released batch of emails from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases under Dr. Anthony Fauci, obtained by Judicial Watch through a Freedom of Information Act request.

The New York Post: Biden’s dog Major bit Secret Service members 8 days in row, emails show

 President Biden’s German shepherd Major attacked many more people than the White House has disclosed, according to newly released emails.

The documents indicate that Major bit members of the Secret Service eight days in a row in early March — though only one such incident was publicly acknowledged.”

 

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