Letter: Michael Craigmile, Waterford

Editor: The recent FOIA request for correspondence between Loudoun County representatives and the Virginia Education Association has revealed a clear pattern; Virginia’s teacher’s union (VEA) continues to fearmonger to our elected representatives at the expense of our children, and the future of education in Virginia.

The VEA only seeks to have schools remain partially closed for as long as possible.

The recent approach to returning to a lightly hybridized model for in-person/virtual learning satisfies the wish list of the union but gives little relief to parents. More importantly, SB1303, a substitute bill for re-opening that has the support of Gov. Northam, the VEA, and state Democrats, does not follow the science outlined by the CDC. The fact is that responsible approaches to in-person learning does not pose a significant threat of Covid 19 spread according to the CDC.

It is long past time for Virginia to return to offering full in-person learning. We were promised that under Democratic leadership, our elected officials would “follow the science.” What is very clear is that the promise should have come with an asterisk: follow the science* when politically expedient and supported by the teacher’s union.

If parents individually decide that they do not want their child participating in in-person learning, it is their prerogative to seek educational choices that align with their values as a family; just as advocates for vouchers, school choice, charter schools, and private schools have argued for years.

However, the VEA who has coordinated an effort to introduce a fear of re-opening, pressure our officials, and not follow the science behind an informed policy of school re-opening should not dictate Loudoun’s approach to education policy. They clearly do not have the interest of our children, our education system, or our communities at heart.

We stand on the precipice of losing a generation to education failure, simply because the VEA is refusing to do its job. Tragically, those who are falling the farthest behind are lower-income communities who do not have the resources for connectivity, or the time to supplement the education of their children, as all parents have been asked to do this year.

Members of the union who refuse to return to in-person learning despite the prioritization of vaccinating teachers ahead of other workers who have been working in-person for nearly a year, and after over a hundred billion dollars were spent in federal aid to provide for safe school re-opening should be terminated and replaced with non-unionized passionate educators who want to be with students and will adhere to public health guidance.

Maybe then Loudoun’s children will receive an education that teaches the science that our leadership and the union has chosen to ignore.

Michael Craigmile, Waterford

9 thoughts on “Letter: Michael Craigmile, Waterford

  • 2021-02-19 at 12:31 pm

    I’m of the belief that local “educators,” their superiors and other local political allies are participants in an ongoing scheme to defraud taxpayers of their money. These are truly corrupt organizations acting in concert with one another, across jurisdictional and state lines.

    RICO statutes should apply.

    We’re long, LONG past the point where any reasonable, sane person (not involved in the corruption) could POSSIBLY think the actions surrounding the ongoing closure of schools are anything but criminal acts.

  • 2021-02-19 at 12:56 pm

    The VEA nor the LEA care about you or your kids. The current regimes at Harrison Street, “Education” court, or in Richmond and Washington do not care about you or your kids.

    They whisper sweet nothings in voters ears at election time, and then promptly head down to the dark corner booth at the bar to spend quality time with their true loves; unions and other special interest groups, laughing it up at what suckers you are, while you get to stay home with the kids.

    It’s always about them and theirs. Never about the people. Wake up.

  • 2021-02-19 at 2:41 pm

    Kudos to the letter writer for correctly summarizing the state of Loudoun Education!!

    Our kids are NOT a priority. Science is NOT dictating anything. The teachers “union” is calling the shots.

    Our elected officials are NOT doing their jobs. They pander and are cowards. All should resign.

    Loudoun youth is one year behind. They have lost a year of education.

    The hybrid return is a joke.

    Our kids will return to a class with a proctor and a TV set as the teachers will continue to teach from home.

    Will a leader rise out of the failed Loudoun education ashes and make the right choices for our kids?

  • 2021-02-19 at 7:42 pm

    As soon as i read that union was involved i knew the interest of the public or the kids was not a priority. By definition a union’s interest is that of its members. Anything different from that is a violation of the law (National Labor Relations Act). By definition relationship between the union and the “employer” (LCSB) is adversarial. So there is nothing to indicate that this union has the interest of the students at heart. Anything they say should be assume to be false and misleading.

  • 2021-02-19 at 8:00 pm

    The Teacher’s Union is one of the most corrupt organizations in the USA, each of them care only about getting their union members paid as much as possible for as little work as possible, and also they want to make sure their members are never held accountable for anything. Hold teacher’s accountable for test scores dropping in your county? “No way” says the union, it’s never the teacher’s fault.
    Teachers are just as guilty of the fear mongering as the union these days- they are harping on kids to scare them out of returning to in-person learning. My child says teachers in every subject are waging an all-out campaign to make sure kids select to stay at home, and learn very little.
    There are many excellent, caring, and dedicated teachers- but they are just too quiet and get steamrolled by the loudmouth union reps and other teachers.

  • 2021-02-21 at 10:24 am

    When I was on the school board (2003-2011) I was frequently asked why aren’t there more private schools in Loudoun given the income of the citizens who live here. I would honestly say (as all three of my children were attending LCPS) it was one of the best school systems in the USA right up there with Greenwich, Connecticut which I used as a comparison to irritate Dr. Hatrick. Now I seriously wonder why there isn’t a tremendous influx of alternate K-12 opportunities. I also wonder why enterprising elected officials are not pushing for vouchers so some of the excessive property tax we pay in Loudoun should not be allocated to alternate education choices. Isn’t this BOS solidly in favor of CHOICE? 🙂

  • 2021-02-22 at 10:37 pm

    This is a workplace safety above all.

    Until the letter writer and his amen chorus are willing to stand in front of a classroom themselves all day, they should stop opining. The wishes and desires of parents are duly noted, but parents are probably the least important stakeholders in this discussion. What they “want” is immaterial.

    • 2021-02-23 at 9:58 am

      Bravo to Bigdaddy for honestly articulating how the industrial education complex at ‘education court’ really feels.

    • 2021-02-23 at 8:09 pm

      Workplace safety? Didn’t the teachers climb over the bodies of dead senior citizens in order to receive the vaccine?

      How about this…. you provide an EXACT and DEFINED threshold when you are willing to return to work?

      If the majority of the taxpayers don’t agree with that position, then every teacher gets a a pink slip and we start over from scratch.

      This isn’t a game. And you’re not going to win.

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