The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy of ‘School Hesitancy’

Shocker: When you keep schools closed, lie about them being death mills, then call opening advocates white supremacists, parents may not be in a hurry to send their kids back to part-time Zoom-in-a-room.

by Matt Welch

As the 2020-21 school year wheezes toward expiration, a foul new public policy term has arisen to meet our fallen moment.

“Experts have coined the term ‘school hesitancy’ to describe the remarkably durable resistance to a return to traditional learning,” The New York Times reported over the weekend. “More than [one-]third of fourth- and eighth-graders, and an even larger group of high school students,” are still learning remote-only, the paper found. “A majority of Black, Hispanic and Asian-American students remain out of school.”

Teachers unions and their apologists are fond of portraying this reluctance as largely an exercise of choice by minority parents who have understandable mistrust of their system’s dedication to safety.

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