By Samuel Strait, Reporter at Large – February 13, 2021

It  would appear that the pretense the Del Norte Unified School District
will actually get back into the business of providing education to the
youth of the County is front and center after a nearly full year in
hiding.  Seems that the local high school’s principal, Alison Eckart, is
nearly giddy with delight over the prospect of reanimating the high
school’s near ghost like emptiness since March of 2020.  She announced
that she would like to have a “special” welcome back for the school’s
seniors, how precious, after a year long hiatus from the serious
business of delivering education to them.  Of course there is no mention
of the abysmal fumbling that has plagued our schools since last spring,
nor any mention of just how large of an impact the lack of education
over the past year will effect students going forward. However;  it
would appear that the effort to have in person education, you all know,
that stuff where you sat behind a desk with a teacher at the head of the
room lecturing, will be somewhat different.  It appears that this new
form of education will be delivered in the normal haphazard fashion of
alternating days, mixed with on line learning during the remaining
days.  Naturally, the “brightest” among us are apparently oblivious to
the fact that on line learning/distant learning has yet to qualify for
getting the job done.

It seems that all other activities associated with public schools will
like wise be cancelled or truncated in the name of “public safety”.  
Athletics, extracurricular activities and the like will all be forced
into some sort of bizarre caricature of real activities, tennis and golf
allowed, team sports cancelled, the marching band in some sort of
“social distancing” spread formation, no doubt wearing three masks, and
washing their hands before returning into the high school proper.   It
hearkens to mind the rigid behavior found in the Soviet Union
surrounding such activities, block warden anyone?  Students are expected
to adhere without fail to the “special training” they will be receiving
in class.  We do not wish to upset our local master’s by not taking all
of this seriously, heaven forbid we upset Dr. Warren Rehwaldt or the
“State”.

Naturally, there are too numerous to count restrictions on most
activities and a bewildering maze of what groups are “not at risk”
despite the fact that they appear to be normal parts of the regular
curriculum.  What is it about theater students or band students that
make them “not a targeted risk student”?   Then the cherry on top of the
pie, as our illustrious Superintendent of Schools, Jeff Harris, gravely
pronounced this positively hilarious excuse for why more at-risk-kids
could not return to school,  wait for it, lack of transportation.  I
suppose with all the new Covid restrictions, the district’s
transportation fleet was simply overwhelmed by the need to provide
multiple buses to service each route due to “social distancing”.

I would guess that neither the state nor the local school district have
gotten the memo that there is near zero risk for young people and the
mandates seem a bit over blown.  Yet students must “prove” if that is
even possible of their virus free status before entering the high
school, be given a “passport”, and conform to all of the “special
training”.  One has to wonder if any time remains for the “educational”
aspect of coming to the high school.  Likely not a chance, and the D’s
and F’s will continue to pile up.  For teacher’s in fear of risking
their lives by entering the “virus zone” of public education, there is
always the glass or plexiglass made boxes found in court rooms of the
old Soviet Union to teach from.  Never fear the circus must go on.

Stay tuned as there will shortly be reporting of yet another of the
annual romps by the teacher’s union whining about more money, benefits,
and new contracts.  Some professionals who hardly deserve the name will
be unashamedly putting forth their case for why an entitled class of
people who already make substantially more than most in Del Norte County
deserve a pretty significant raise after what many would consider them
to have been on a largely year long paid vacation.

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