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NYT analysis finds school closures harmed students, especially in major cities 'which tend to be run by Democratic officials'

The New York Times’ David Leonhardt has a new piece out today that says what *we* knew since 2020: “New research is showing the high costs of long school closures in some communities”:


And this analysis found that schools in major cities “which tend to be run by Democratic officials”  and “also more likely to have unionized teachers” were hardest hit. From the New York Times:

One of the most alarming findings is that school closures widened both economic and racial inequality in learning. In Monday’s newsletter, I told you about how much progress K-12 education had made in the U.S. during the 1990s and early 2000s: Math and reading skills improved, especially for Black and Latino students.

The Covid closures have reversed much of that progress, at least for now. Low-income students, as well as Black and Latino students, fell further behind over the past two years, relative to students who are high-income, white or Asian. “This will probably be the largest increase in educational inequity in a generation,” Thomas Kane, an author of the Harvard study, told me.

There are two main reasons. First, schools with large numbers of poor students were more likely to go remote.

Why? Many of these schools are in major cities, which tend to be run by Democratic officials, and Republicans were generally quicker to reopen schools. High-poverty schools are also more likely to have unionized teachers, and some unions lobbied for remote schooling.


And there’s no real plan to help the kids left behind to catch up:

“I’m afraid that while school agencies are planning a range of activities for catch-up, their plans are just not commensurate with the losses.”

And, yes, this is happening in blue states to kids the most at risk:

Maybe blue-state governors should have listened to some of the voices on our side?


We have been shouting about it of late:

But it was just conservatives saying this. Dr. Michael Osterholm — who went on to adviser President Joe Biden on Covid — was warning about school closures in March 2020:

And the New York Times was warning about closing schools and how the most at-risk kids would have a hard time catching up, but everyone seems to have just ignored it:

And, yet, not a single one of the people who made these decisions will lose their jobs:


A hat-trick of failure:

“Keeping schools closed in Fall 2020 and beyond was a) disastrous for students, b) even more disastrous for poor/minority students, and c) almost certainly useless as an anti-COVID measure.”

Well, they’re going to try to get more taxpayer money directed toward the unions:


So, when does the New York Times write a piece on how masking toddlers is dangerous?

Do we have to wait 18 months for that, too?


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