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Parents Got More Time Off. Then the Backlash Started.

A Los Angeles Unified School District student uses his fingers to solve a math problem while taking an online class at Boys & Girls Club of Hollywood in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
A Los Angeles Unified School District student uses his fingers to solve a math problem while taking an online class at Boys & Girls Club of Hollywood in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

OAKLAND, Calif. — When the coronavirus closed schools and child care centers and turned American parenthood into a multitasking nightmare, many tech companies rushed to help their employees. They used their comfortable profit margins to extend workers new benefits, including extra time off for parents to help them care for their children.

It wasn’t long before employees without children started to ask: What about us?

At a recent companywide meeting, Facebook employees repeatedly argued that work policies created in response to COVID-19 “have primarily benefited parents.” At Twitter, a fight erupted on an internal message board after a worker who didn’t have children at home accused another employee, who was taking a leave to care for

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  • September 6, 2020
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Trump’s campaign to open schools provokes mounting backlash even from GOP

President Donald Trump has been on a rampage against public schools and colleges all week, threatening to use the power of the federal government to strong-arm officials into reopening classrooms.

But his effort is now creating a backlash: An overwhelming alignment of state and even Republican-aligned organizations oppose the rush to reopen schools. The nation’s leading pediatricians, Republican state school chiefs, Christian colleges and even the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have all challenged parts of Trump’s pressure campaign.

“Threats are not helpful,” Joy Hofmeister, the Republican state superintendent of public instruction in Oklahoma, told POLITICO on Friday. “We do not need to be schooled on why it’s important to reopen.”

Both Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos have issued federal funding threats to schools that don’t fully reopen. On Friday, Trump went a step further in blasting online learning — which many school districts and colleges are planning to use

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