The Watertown Educators Association supports the School Committee and Superintendent Deanne Galdston in their decision to begin the school year with a robust remote learning plan and a strategic return to in-person learning using sensible health and safety protocols.
Educators are dismayed by Commissioner Jeff Riley and Governor Charlie Baker’s threatening directive to recklessly force students and educators back into school buildings.
How the school year unfolds is a local decision arrived at democratically, and stakeholders in the community have made clear that beginning with remote learning is the best way to meet the needs of students while preventing the spread of COVID-19 to our students, our school staff, and the community.
Educators want nothing more than to be back in classrooms with their students. However, the risk of COVID-19 makes that impossible, and is particularly concerning in Watertown where school buildings present health and safety issues to address before a physical return makes sense.
Educators, students, and families are working together to meet the incredible challenges of creating a successful learning environment. Commissioner Riley and Governor Baker should not undermine this work with baseless threats, especially as the state reports significant amounts of new COVID-19 cases daily — and, sadly, persistent daily deaths attributed to the disease.
Watertown fulfilled its obligation to the state in presenting education plans for different scenarios many weeks ago. The state must now respect Watertown’s local decision.
Watertown Educators Association