Op-Ed: Pennsylvania parents challenge teachers unions in fight for children’s education

Originally published at The Washington Examiner.

Pennsylvania teachers union leaders have been pressuring government officials to keep schools closed during the pandemic, but they're running into opposition from a growing coalition of parents who find that for most students, remote learning is not sufficient.

Eighty percent of parents in eastern Pennsylvania want schools reopened five days a week. Meanwhile, union leaders have been sending out mixed messages.

In January, Pennsylvania State Education Association press officer Chris Lilienthal claimedthat the union “does not tell schools to have in-person, hybrid or remote learning — these are decisions that need to be made at the district level.” But in a November interview, the spokesman for the state’s largest public employee union stated that if the union hears “of districts that are disregarding the public health guidelines … we will use our voices.”

Pushing back on this opposition to in-person learning is Parents for In-Person Education, or PIPE, which was organized last fall when Montgomery County, suburban Philadelphia’s largest county, ordered the closure of all K-12 schools for in-person learning. PIPE activists are set to gather outside the offices of the union in Montgomeryville on Saturday.

PIPE has shared…

Read more at The Washington Examiner.