Opinion
Teaching Profession Letter to the Editor

Educators Have a Responsibility to Support the Common Good

August 31, 2021 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

I am disappointed and alarmed to see EdWeek, usually a very reputable source of education policy information, give uncritical space to people who ignore our public health experts (“Why This Science Teacher Doesn’t Want the COVID Vaccine,” Aug. 17, 2021). When you publish Davis Eidahl’s uninformed viewpoints and emphasize that he is a science teacher, you build baseless doubts about an extremely safe vaccine. The scientific facts are that the COVID-19 vaccine is effective and saves lives.

People who refuse to get the vaccine put others at risk—children who are too young to get the vaccine and people who cannot get it for medical reasons. As educators, we have a responsibility to protect our students. Those who refuse to do so shirk their responsibility and hide behind the claim that getting their shot is an individual decision. It is not. It is a choice that impacts everyone around them. Public health and infectious disease control, like education, is a right and a responsibility for the entire community.

I hope that you will soon publish articles of interviews with students who lost grandparents, parents, and siblings to this terrible disease. You could interview teachers and principals who lost colleagues before the vaccine was ready. I wonder what all those millions of people who lost loved ones to COVID-19 would have to say to Eidhal. Perhaps you could find some medical professionals who sat with mothers and fathers as they died alone in hospital rooms. Maybe Eidhal and people like him would fulfill their civic duty if they heard more of those stories instead of rumors.

Sadie Baker
Science Teacher
Baltimore, Md.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the September 01, 2021 edition of Education Week as Educators Have a Responsibility to Support the Common Good

Events

School & District Management K-12 Essentials Forum Get a Strong Start to the New School Year
Get insights and actions from Education Week journalists and expert guests on how to start the new school year on strong footing.
Reading & Literacy Webinar A Roadmap to Multisensory Early Literacy Instruction: Accelerate Growth for All Students 
How can you develop key literacy skills with a diverse range of learners? Explore best practices and tips to meet the needs of all students. 
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
College & Workforce Readiness Webinar
Supporting 21st Century Skills with a Whole-Child Focus
What skills do students need to succeed in the 21st century? Explore the latest strategies to best prepare students for college, career, and life.
Content provided by Panorama Education

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Teaching Profession From Our Research Center 'Over It': Most Educators Say They Won't Mask This Fall
But teachers are more likely than administrators to keep masking, EdWeek Research Center survey data show.
7 min read
Image of a face mask on a school notebook.
Steven White/iStock/Getty
Teaching Profession Opinion If I'd Only Known. Veteran Teachers Offer Advice for Beginners
With the guidance of longtime teachers, novice educators can avoid many of the pitfalls and find success in the classroom.
3 min read
A teacher tries to juggle remote and in-person instruction
Vanessa Solis/Education Week and Getty images
Teaching Profession Opinion How I'm Putting the Joy Back in Teaching This Year
Here are three steps I’m taking to bring back the joy—for my students and for myself.
Domonique Dickson
4 min read
Conceptual Illustration of people floating in space around a bright central core
iStock/Getty Images
Teaching Profession Opinion Why I Left Teaching (Spoiler: It Wasn't the Students)
A public school teacher explains how three troubling trends drove him out of the profession this year.
Paul Veracka
5 min read
Illustration of exit doors leading out of a school hallway
iStock/Getty Images Plus