85% Non-White NY Schools Stay Open During Coronavirus Because Schools "Double As Social Service Centers For Hundreds Of Thousands Of Poor Students"
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Earlier: In Spite Of Wuhan Virus, Seattle Schools Stay Open Because "Diverse" K-12 Students Need Access To Free Lunch Program/Daycare

New York City is a 33 percent white city, but only 15 percent of students in the public school system are white. Some deeper statistics for those interested in the racial breakdown of the largest public school system in America:

  • 13.2 percent of students are English Language Learners
  • 20.2 percent are students with disabilities
  • 72.8 percent are economically disadvantaged

Starting in the calendar year 2017-2018, all students attending New York City public schools were eligible for free lunches (did you know the federal government spends $12 billion each year on free lunches for students nationwide?) to facilitate the discontinuing of “lunch shaming” and the stigma around overwhelmingly non-white students getting their lunches paid for by taxpayers [How New York City hopes to end the stigma associated with ‘lunch shaming’ by feeding every student for free, CNBC, September 30, 2017].

Well, the 85 percent non-white New York City Public School system (66 percent Hispanic and black) won’t shut down for fear of the Wuhan virus/coronavirus spreading, because these taxpayer-supported institutions “double as social service centers for hundreds of thousands of poor students.”

Coronavirus in N.Y.C.: Why Closing Public Schools Is a ‘Last Resort’: The city’s schools will probably stay open because they double as social service centers for hundreds of thousands of poor students, New York Times, March 9, 2020

New York City has the largest public school system in the United States, a vast district with about 750,000 children who are poor, including around 114,000 who are homeless.

For such students, school may be the only place they can get three hot meals a day and medical care, and even wash their dirty laundry.

That is why the city’s public schools will probably stay open even if the new coronavirus becomes more widespread in New York. Richard A. Carranza, the schools chancellor, said earlier this week that he considered long-term closings an “extreme” measure and a “last resort.”

There are no plans to shut schools down, and Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Friday that none of the city’s 1.1 million public school students had shown any symptoms of the virus. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have advised that, so far, children have been less likely than adults to become infected.

Even a single snow day can seriously disrupt the lives of New York’s most vulnerable children and their parents and other relatives, whose jobs often do not provide paid time off, said Aaron Pallas, a professor of education at Columbia University’s Teachers College.

Large-scale school closings might mean, for example, that subway conductors and bus drivers must stay home with their children, or that nurses at public hospitals would not be able to come to work, potentially slowing essential city services.

Although millions of students around the world have already had their schools close because of the virus, such a move would present a major challenge for a district where many children do not have internet access at home, making remote learning nearly impossible.

Nicole Manning, a ninth-grade math teacher at Herbert H. Lehman High School in the Bronx, estimated that up to half of her students did not have internet access at home.

“We can’t do distance learning,” she said. “It wouldn’t be fair.”

Valerie Green-Thomas, a teachers’ coach at Middle School 390 in the South Bronx, said she would be concerned that students would not have access to crucial medical help at the school’s on-site clinic if there were widespread closings.

“We have a lot of underserved kids,” Ms. Green-Thomas said.

The situation has been starkly different thus far at some of the city’s elite private schools, where the student bodies tend to be much whiter and wealthier than they are in public schools.

Spence, an all-girls school on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, closed on Friday for a “comprehensive sanitization of the entire campus,” according to a notice posted on its website. It was unclear whether the school had a link to one of New York State’s confirmed coronavirus cases. School representatives did not respond to requests for comment.

Collegiate, a private all-boys school on the Upper West Side, was also closed on Friday for a similar purpose. An email to families from the school’s headmaster did not indicate any connections to a confirmed case, but said that a parent of one student might have been exposed to the virus.

Private schools can decide to close independently, but public schools must follow guidance from the city and state education departments.

In interviews, public-school teachers across the city exuded calm and said that they believed school was a safe place for children to be given the current circumstances. It appeared that most parents agreed: Student attendance rates were as high if not higher this past week than they were a year ago at this time, Mr. de Blasio said.

Teachers said that, at this point, they were much more concerned about racism and xenophobia directed at Asian students because of the virus’s origins in China than they were with the virus itself.

Ms. Manning is used to nasty stomach bugs and seasonal flus spreading through her school like wildfire.

“We have good hygiene, and we don’t really do much different,” she said, adding that students were being asked to be especially vigilant about wiping down their calculators and desks, and about washing their hands.

“I’m a rational person, I’m a math person,” Ms. Manning said, noting that the small number of confirmed cases in New York City had not yet been a cause for alarm.

But she also said that she was spending much of her time “squelching rumors” about where the virus comes from and how people contract it. “I don’t really put up with nonsense,” she said.

Lynn Shon, a science teacher at Middle School 88 in Brooklyn, which has a large Asian-American population, said that “with crisis often comes opportunity.” After one her students blurted out in class that “bat soup” in China was the source of the virus, and indicated that she was disgusted by the idea, Ms. Shon, who is Asian-American, was distraught.

Later that day, she set to work making a presentation about the virus that she could share with her class and other teachers.

The fragility of our civilization is being exposed with the Wuhan virus/coronavirus scare, with the agitprop “diversity is our strength” melting like a popsicle on a hot summers day.

Stocks will rise and fall, and rise again.

But demography is destiny.

Even in the face of a pandemic, New York City Public Schools must stay open because they “double as social service centers for hundreds of thousands of poor students.”

The school system is 15 percent white.

Precautionary measures to stop a pandemic fall on deaf ears when a diverse student body is in need of being provided a social service center (for brief moments of the day dubbed a school) to loiter around in for the day.

The only thing uniting wide swaths of the American population is their reliance on redistributed white taxpayer dollars to exist.

As whites fade away, what will unite the people living in America when they are gone?

Or will the existence of graveyards full of dead white males/females be blamed for the decline when no living white people can be found to denounce for the failure of black/brown rule?

[Comment at Unz.com]

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