The Tragedy of the Schools

Daniel Henninger:

In Chicago, the nation’s third-largest system is on the brink of a strike, despite pleas from the city’s progressive mayor, Lori Lightfoot, for the teachers to return. Unions are resisting opening in Los Angeles, Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia and Washington. Michael Mulgrew, head of the teachers union in New York City, says the schools may not open “until September.”

San Francisco’s Board of Education has enough time on its hands to vote 6-1 to cancel the names of 44 Americans from their public schools. On Wednesday, the city sued its own school board for failing to get the schools open. 

Though teaching modes vary by state, what data exist suggests in-person teaching at public schools is below 25%, while it’s about 60% at private schools, which have largely reopened.

At the start of the pandemic, the closures were understandable. They no longer are, with even the oh-so-careful Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saying there is scant evidence of significant virus transmission among grade-school-age children.

Some public districts are performing, as are many dedicated teachers. But parents aren’t waiting for the next school-board election to file complaints. They are voting with their children’s feet.

Related: Catholic schools will sue Dane County Madison Public Health to open as scheduled

Notes and links on Dane County Madison Public Health. (> 140 employees).

Molly Beck and Madeline Heim:

which pushed Dane County this week not to calculate its percentage of positive tests — a data point the public uses to determine how intense infection is in an area.   

While positive test results are being processed and their number reported quickly, negative test results are taking days in some cases to be analyzed before they are reported to the state. 


The department said it was between eight and 10 days behind in updating that metric on the dashboard, and as a result it appeared to show a higher positive percentage of tests and a lower number of total tests per day.

The department said this delay is due to the fact data analysts must input each of the hundreds of tests per day manually, and in order to continue accurate and timely contact tracing efforts, they prioritized inputting positive tests.

“Positive tests are always immediately verified and processed, and delays in processing negative tests in our data system does not affect notification of test results,” the department said in a news release. “The only effect this backlog has had is on our percent positivity rate and daily test counts.”

Staff have not verified the approximately 17,000 tests, which includes steps such as matching test results to patients to avoid duplicating numbers and verifying the person who was tested resides in Dane County.

All 77 false-positive COVID-19 tests come back negative upon reruns.

Madison private school raises $70,000 for lawsuit against public health order. – WKOW-TV. Commentary.

WEAC: $1.57 million for Four Wisconsin Senators

Assembly against private school forced closure.

Wisconsin Catholic schools will challenge local COVID-19 closing order. More.

2017: West High Reading Interventionist Teacher’s Remarks to the School Board on Madison’s Disastrous Reading Results

Madison’s taxpayer supported K-12 school district, despite spending far more than most, has long tolerated disastrous reading results.

My Question to Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers on Teacher Mulligans and our Disastrous Reading Results

“An emphasis on adult employment”

Wisconsin Public Policy Forum Madison School District Report[PDF]

Booked, but can’t read (Madison): functional literacy, National citizenship and the new face of Dred Scott in the age of mass incarceration.