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La. Supt. Cade Brumley Dumps COVID Quarantine Mandate, Frames Change as “Parental Choice.”

October 2, 2021

In a move that apparently caught some members of the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) completely by surprise, Louisiana superintendent decided that students exposed to COVID can remain in the classroom simply because some “educators and parents” are tired of the quarantining.

The medical guidance has not changed on this point, and BESE– Brumley’s boss– has not officially changed its stance. Just Brumley, going rogue in the name of “parental choice.”

Even a director of ed-reform, choice-friendly Stand for Children isn’t buying it. However, some local superintendents are jumping aboard the no-quarantine-by-choice train, under the guise of following Brumley’s so-called “guidance.”

From the September 30, 2021, Advocate:

State Superintendent of Education Cade Brumley’s plan to let students exposed to the coronavirus remain in the classroom sparked pushback Thursday from the education and health communities and even the board that hired him 16 months ago.

Sandy Holloway, president of the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, called Brumley’s announcement Wednesday abrupt and inconsistent. …

She and others on the board, which picked Brumley in May 2020, said they were blindsided by the change.

“The full board was not made aware of and did not have an opportunity to review the guidelines prior to their release,” Holloway said. …

Brumley said he is telling local school districts they have the option of letting students who come into close contact with students or staff who test positive for COVID-19 to remain in the classroom if their parents or guardians opt to do so. …

On Thursday Dr. Leron Finger, chief quality officer for Children’s Hospital in New Orleans, who has advised Brumley and BESE on virus policies, said he would recommend that quarantine guidelines remain in place.

Gov. John Bel Edwards said he also favors keeping current quarantine guidelines intact, especially amid the rising number of COVID-19 cases among children.

BESE member Belinda Davis, who lives in Baton Rouge and is one of the governor’s three appointees on the board, said she and others learned of Brumley’s new guidance in The Advocate.

“Until now, every COVID recommendation LDOE (Louisiana Department of Education) has made has been in line with the recommendations of LDH(Louisiana Department of Health),” Davis said.

“I am at a loss to explain this abrupt departure,” she added, a reference to state Department of Health guidelines.

…Brumley said. “I have just had an increasing number of educators and parents share with me their frustrations around the students not having access to their school because of quarantines.”

“We are not mandating,” Brumley added. “Nor am I speaking out in favor. We are just simply giving systems an additional option.” …

Brumley said Thursday he spoke with members of the medical community “who felt this was an appropriate response” but declined to cite specific doctors. …

The Livingston, Ascension and West Baton Rouge parishes school systems said they will adopt the new state guidance. …

Brigitte Nieland, director of government affairs for the advocacy group Stand For Children, disputed Brumley’s claim that his new guidance is called “parent choice.”

“When you give more choice to select parents by taking away the choice from the majority of parents that is not a choice,” Nieland said. “And that is what he is doing. To put a potentially infected child who is infected with a deadly virus in a classroom with unvaccinated children and a teacher, those other parents have no choice. You have removed all of that.”

The full Advocate article can be found here.

A Brumley bob-and-weave in the name of “not mandating” yet “not in favor”– just changing the LDOE stance on quarantining in a manner that allows Brumley to shrug off any “district-chosen” consequences.

Brumley’s change is pretty wild. “Do what you want” is the antithesis of guidance, and why are we doing this?

Well, because some people complained, and some unnamed doctors said it’s okay– and with the whole deal bypassing official channels. Think about that. With this one, Brumley chose to snub both BESE (his boss) and the governor (his endorser).

A fine effort in souring those who keep you in your state superintendency, Brumley.

Readers, I give you dumb.

Cade Brumley


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One Comment
  1. Christine Langhoff permalink

    Dumb enough to kill people.
    Every time I think we’ve hit bottom, I need to recalculate.

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