To the Editor:

I am a teacher at Thatcher Brook Primary School and a parent in Waterbury Center. I sent this letter to Gov. Scott:

I applaud your decision to close schools across the state. Social distancing is crucial in “flattening the curve,” so that the health care system is not overburdened to the point of not being able to care for patients.

From what I understand globally, Italy has had more deaths than China, and the Chinese believe Italy is still not doing enough to combat this pandemic. I believe we should also be doing even more to enforce social distancing.

I am very concerned by your recent decision to put teachers on the frontline, by requiring them to provide child care for essential workers. I am confused by this decision because it contradicts your decision to close schools.

My colleagues and administrators have been working tirelessly to embrace the new world of remote learning, while also trying to figure out feeding children 18 and under in the entire district.

I am predicting there will not be enough qualified employees to provide care. I am also predicting that there will be too many students needing care who qualify, so then what is the point to closing schools? How do you expect educators to be babysitters while also trying to make sure students are getting a quality education through distance learning?

I implore you to reconsider this decision, otherwise we are doing the community a great disservice, and we won’t be making any progress in combatting this pandemic.

Communities need to think outside of the box and think creatively to provide care; it should not be the burden of schools alone to carry.

Rebecca Chartrand

Waterbury Center

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