By Gumptown Magazine Staff
Montgomery, Alabama– The Alabama Education Association (AEA) is profoundly saddened and shares the grief of the entire Montgomery Public Schools (MPS) community regarding the recent deaths of four educators within 48 hours. Whether these deaths are strictly related to COVID-19 or other underlying conditions, a loss of life cannot be regained or properly compensated. The ongoing pandemic has unconscionably impacted Montgomery’s community – including its school system. With Montgomery being an unfortunate victim of the increased number of COVID-19 educator deaths, it is truly a time to be safe than sorry.
Superintendent Ann Roy Moore and the Montgomery County School Board owes it to the students, educators, and their communities to help minimize the exposure to COVID-19. AEA will offer our continued assistance to ensure students and educators are safe in MPS but will not hesitate to insist schools be required to go to remote teaching and learning when necessary. We are specifically requesting MPS to reassess the impact of the virus through the month of February by allowing remote teaching and learning for students and educators.
Additionally, the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) has recommended sporting events have no more than twenty percent (20%) capacity. With the adverse impact COVID-19 has had on MPS coaches, we are requesting all sporting events be limited to school officials, athletes, coaches, and immediate family members only. The human toll within the school system should be enough reason to reevaluate safety procedures and protocols currently in place.
AEA strongly encourages the Alabama Department of Public Health and MPS to advance efforts to make the COVID-19 vaccine readily accessible for all school employees who wish to receive the vaccine. MPS employees are working under the most strenuous and complicated circumstances anyone could have imagined, and they are doing it with considerable grace and compassion for the students in their care. AEA will continue to advocate for the health and safety of students and our members. It is our job to work together to ensure our students and educators are provided the best and safest school environment possible.
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