Fulton teachers banned from bringing their kids to empty classrooms during virtual learning

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — While Fulton County students will be learning remotely this week, teachers are being forced to teach from their classrooms.

Students are learning remotely from home at least for this week.

Some teachers are frustrated by a new policy that said teachers can’t bring their own children to school with them like they were allowed to do last year.

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Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes was in South Fulton County, where a lawsuit forced school officials to change the policy.

A staff member who doesn’t have any children sued the district, saying it was unfair for teachers to bring their own children into their empty classrooms.

Teachers Fernandes spoke with said they only brought their children with them last year because Fulton administrators wouldn’t let them teach from home.

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Now, if teachers have a childcare issue, they have to use paid time off.

Cassandra Jackson is a parent of a first-grader in the district. She is also from a family of educators in another state where teachers are unionized.

“I’m frustrated for the teachers and the staff members and everyone that’s having to scramble,” Cassandra Jackson said. “My thing that I don’t understand is why the teachers aren’t allowed to teach from home. It’s safer for them. Something like this, where you’re forcing a teacher to choose between students in the classroom and their own children at home wouldn’t fly with a union backing.”

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Fulton administrators issued a statement, saying, “We have to treat employees fairly and provide the same leave options for all teachers.”

Fernandes spoke to several teachers who can’t talk about the policy change on the record for fear of retaliation. They are all wondering what will happen if the pandemic worsens and they’ve used up all of their sick days.

“Board members, the superintendent, the chief talent officer should know better. They should know better,” Jackson said.