During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the GOP and Democrats have been at odds regarding the reopening of schools. Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) took issue with teachers unions, arguing that “if a school continues to cave to the unions at the expense of their students, they should not receive funding.” This week, Randi Weingarten, the President of the American Federation of Teachers, made an announcement, calling for full-time in-person school in the fall. In response, Texas Senator Ted Cruz (R) championed the decision to going back to in-person school, but he did take issue that “union bosses stonewalled for this long,” calling it “shameful.”
The American Federation of Teachers is the second-largest teachers union. Though Weingarten has long argued that schools should reopen, members of the Union were worried that it would not be safe enough to return.
During a speech given on Thursday, Weingarten commented that “there is no doubt: Schools must be open. In person. Five days a week.” Weingarten added that “given current circumstances, nothing should stand in the way of fully reopening our public schools this fall and keeping them open.”
It’s shameful the union bosses stonewalled for this long, but parents can at least be relieved that in the fall their kids will be back in school.
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) May 14, 2021
On Twitter, Senator Cruz said that “it’s shameful the union bosses stonewalled for this long, but parents can at least be relieved that in the fall their kids will be back in school.”
The National Education Association, the largest teachers union in the United States, also released a statement in agreement with Weingarten.
Becky Pringle, the NEA President, commented that “NEA supports school buildings being open to students for in-person instruction in the fall.”