There is an interesting phenomena taking place locally and I have seen mentioned elsewhere, parents are switching their children to some form of private school. In upstate NY it's a sudden surge for the Catholic schools. Up to now they have been in steep decline with annual shrinking enrollments. This year they are committing to opening and now they have waiting lists. What I haven't been able to discern is the parental reasoning. It seems unlikely it's the poorer parents who have jobs where they must be at work, the tuition costs mean you need a decent income and you need to be able to transport you children to and from school each day. Is it conservative parents that think the whole pandemic is fake news or overblown? That seems more likely. While our school has yet to release its plan, other local schools are looking at hybrid models with an option of all remote for parents that do not want to send their children into the buildings. If you are want all in-person, then private is your only option. (A neighboring school system cited as one of their reasons to not have full in person is a lack of sufficient busses and drivers with having to socially distance students on transportation. I wonder where I heard that before).
I suspect there is also a bit of privilege bias. It is true a private school has more student control, there is little barrier to expelling uncooperative students. But I also think there may be a mentality that a better class of people is less likely to get coronavirus. I've seen this before when there are school shootings, postings and comments on friends social media that have veiled references (or sometimes quite explicit references) that private schools don't have shootings, that is a public school problem they can afford to avoid. Somehow, I don't think a virus is going to be discerning of one's family income level.
Given the resources of MLB, and the relatively small number of players and coaches, the fact that even they can't find a workable solution should be a clanging warning that schools, any schools, are unlikely to be able to make this work for a whole academic year.
This post made be go find a quote from a MLB player, "Sports are like the reward of a functional society" - Sean Doolittle of the Nationals on playing during the pandemic.
A harsh lesson in the reality of COVID-19
The next time you’re put out because your favorite spots are closed or because they won’t let you enter without wearing a mask, and you decide to defy them rather than comply because you’re defending your rights and freedoms from being trampled, just remember: Your family and friends may be next.
Is that too harsh? Try imagining someone you care about on life support. Try being the one to pick the only 10 people allowed to attend a funeral for a loved one. But don’t fret; you’ve got time to ponder, because the mortuary is booked out for at least a week.
Now imagine one more thing: That pool party, the mixer or family reunion you’re pushing for resulting in you being cold and alone in a hospital bed, fighting for your life. Imagine the only human contact you feel is a stranger’s rubber glove giving you medication, checking your vitals and changing your diaper.
That is exactly what has happened to our family.
America, this is not going to go away without sacrifice. Either way, we are going to pay a price. Governments are faced with making difficult decisions, and they cannot appease and satisfy everyone.
But to do nothing is to be foolish. To ignore or question the validity of this virus, its contagiousness or the consequences of selfish attitudes is — at this stage — completely stupid.
I am calling myself out first, but now this is personal, and I fell on my sword. And I promise you, if we continue being more worried about the disruption to our lives than we are about stopping this virus, not one American will be spared.
That strikes at the heart; but this part made me think of Dan Patrick (who has been VERY quiet since the pandemic came to Texas and took up residency):
For those who deny the virus exists or who downplay its severity, let me assure you: The coronavirus is very real and extremely contagious. Before you even know you have it, you’ve passed it along to your friends, family, coworkers and neighbors.
And now, husbands, wives and children are being separated. The sick are taking care of the sick while those without symptoms are self-quarantining. I am aware of how my bias could discredit me with some, but trust me, you do not want this virus. And you do not want your loved ones suffering and dying from this because you are taking a “political stand” or protecting the economy over their lives.
I'd like Mr. Patrick to read this and respond to "protecting the economy over [our] lives." Mr. Green believed that, and as a consequence he got covid-19 and gave it to his partner, his parents, his in-laws and their daughter. Mr. Gren would be dead if the hospital staff hadn't saved him from a stroke induced by the virus. It even reached his father-in-law's mother; through him, he is convinced:
My father-in-law’s mother was admitted a day later. On July 1, she died of COVID-19/pneumonia. The chaplain wanted the family to break the news to my father-in-law, and he learned how his mother lay on her deathbed and then drifted off without any family by her side, even though he was in the room next to hers.
On the day of her funeral, which was July 14, five more of our family members tested positive for the virus. That evening, my father-in-law was put on a ventilator.
You cannot imagine the guilt I feel, knowing that I hosted the gathering that led to so much suffering. You cannot imagine my guilt at having been a denier, carelessly shuffling through this pandemic, making fun of those wearing masks and social distancing. You cannot imagine my guilt at knowing that my actions convinced both our families it was safe when it wasn’t.
Dan Patrick said (and later denied saying it) that the elderly were expendable in the name of economic recovery. Is this why he is so silent now? Because the virus has become real?
I can't explain the interest in private schools, either. Covid knows no social or economic barriers. The case of the MLB is proof of that. Those guys may just be "ball players," but many of them are millionaires. I'm not looking forward to the horror of another spike as children go to class and mingle and go home, whether the school is public or private.
Must we all be so hard-headed as to take instruction only from experience? At what cost?