Randi Weingarten is the president of the American Federation of Teachers and a member of the AFL–CIO, but she's perhaps best known as being the key advocate for shutting schools down during the onset of the Covid pandemic.
Weingarten was called to task this week on the Don Lemon-less CNN by senior political commentator Scott Jennings, who excoriated the union boss after she engaged in historical revisionism over her role in school shutdowns - insisting before the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, that she had instead advocated for reopening schools as quickly as possible.
AFT President Randi Weingarten: "We spent every day from February on trying to get schools open. We knew that remote education was not a substitute for opening schools." pic.twitter.com/1qNL05VD3u— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) April 26, 2023
Not so fast, Randi...
"Speaking on behalf of millions of American parents, I had to teach them at home," Jenning said. "My wife had to teach them at home. I am stunned at what you have said this week about your claiming to have wanted to reopen schools."
In 2020, Weingarten called attempts to reopen schools in the fall of 2020 "reckless, callous and cruel."
CNN's Jennings continued to shred Weingarten, stating: "I think you'll find that most parents believe you are the tip of the spear of school closures. There are numerous statements you made over the summer of '20 scaring people to death about the possibility of opening schools. And I hear no remorse whatsoever about the generational damage that's been done to these kids."
"I have two kids with learning differences. Do you know how hard it is for them to learn at home and not in a classroom that was designed for them? And for you to sit in front of Congress and the American people and say, oh, ‘I wanted to open up them the whole time,’" I am shocked. I'm stunned. I'm stunned," he continued. "And there are millions of parents who feel the exact same way."
.@ScottJenningsKY to @rweingarten: "I am stunned at what you have said this week...I think you'll find that most parents believe you are the tip of the sphere of school closures...I hear no remorse whatsoever about the generational damage that's been done..." pic.twitter.com/gVCDgpP3dN— Kevin Tober (@KevinTober94) April 28, 2023
Additionally, the NY Post reported last week that one epidemiologist claimed Weingarten even "fudged a scientific study" that showed low levels of Covid transmission in schools in order to keep schools closed during the pandemic.
Co-author of the study, Dr. Tracy Høeg, wrote on Twitter last week: “We saw remarkably low in school transmission & no known transmission to teachers.”
She added: “The fact the [CDC] was taking the advice of the [AFT] & not the scientists publishing on this topic in their own journal and without considering the data from Europe seems to have played a role in the massive error that left millions [of] US kids out of school unnecessarily.”
Weingarten had used the study “multiple times as evidence schools needed ‘layered mitigation’ to reopen”, she said during a congressional hearing.
“The way Ms. Weingarten mentioned me in her testimony, one might have thought I was being consulted all along but this was not the case,” Høeg said, shredding the assumptions of the union leader.
“Despite the wording in [Randi Weingarten’s] written testimony, I consistently *disagreed* w/ what she & AFT were requesting in terms of mitigation to reopen schools & I’ve said that consistently (on social media, in op-eds, on news interviews) since our study was published.”
Meanwhile, Weingarten has doubled down on Twitter - and locked down replies from the general public!
Covid scared the nation, but we tried to do everything we could to reopen schools safely. It would have helped if Trump/DeVos helped instead of hectored. Now we must do everything we can to help kids learn & overcome the effects of the pandemic. https://t.co/waWT8BuCQh— Randi Weingarten 🇺🇦🇺🇸💪🏿👩🎓 (@rweingarten) April 28, 2023
Community notes to the rescue;
Then and now;