You will notice that my posting has stretched out quite a bit this year. This has been due in part to some family issues that have worsened of late. Because of that, I will not be posting about my classroom, likely for the rest of the year. I may put up occasional policy opinion posts. Thank you for reading my blog and I hope to be able to resume writing about my classroom experiences next year.
The following was a speech I planned to deliver at last month’s CTA State Council in regards to State Senator Dr. Richard Pan’s SB 277 . Due to personal difficulties, I was unable to attend, but I wanted to share it as CTA has not yet taken a position on this issue:
I have a personal stake in this, but what I’m going to say is informed by what medical professionals and public health experts have to say. It is my assertion that the PBE for immunizations needs to be eliminated. While I’m loathe to impose on parents, this is a larger issue than individual beliefs and has now become a public safety issue. I wish that talking and reasoning would make a difference, as this would be a preferable way to go, but based on what we already seeing, and what human behavior studies tell us, this will not resolve this issue.
Some folks reading Diane Ravitch are appalled that New Mexico has written into law a new “gag” rule forbidding criticizing state tests or talking to parents about opting out. Calls are being made for the ACLU to involve itself, etc., etc. I abhor laws like this, but they are not new. We’ve had prohibitions on “soliciting” opting out of testing by teachers to parent in the Ed Code of California since before I started teaching. The case law limiting the free expression of public employees including teachers is not a new thing. The direction has been getting better in the courts, especially in the area of whistle-blowing.