Ashley Varner writes at Real Clear Policy about a response to missteps from those who lead the education establishment.

Perhaps predictably, many public schools kicked off 2022 by switching back to remote learning — or canceling classes altogether — leaving frustrated parents across the country frantically searching for more consistent schooling options.

These past two school years of remote and hybrid learning, forced masking, and an intensified culture of unpredictability has pushed teachers, administrators, students, and parents to very edge. What began as a temporary interruption to student learning has become a vicious cycle of confusion, inconsistency and lost educational time.

Thanks to the unreliability of distance learning, children are retaining less of what they’ve learned, reading at lower grade levels and suffering from a lack of social interaction. There is little to no support for children who rely on school to provide a safe haven from difficult home lives, and students in free or reduced meal plans have a harder time receiving them.

As school policies continue to isolate students from friends and peers, such as forcing students to eat their lunch outside on buckets, or facing the same direction without talking, the tragic numbers of adolescent depression, anxiety, and suicide continue to rise.

Millions of exasperated parents, many in deep-blue cities and states, are desperately pursuing educational alternatives that better suit their families’ needs and values. Parents are enrolling their children in private and charter schools in droves, while those without the financial means to do so remain stuck in a system captive to the whims of teachers’ unions and indifferent school boards.

Many teachers are going above and beyond in the name of what is best for kids, but their ability to truly innovate and explore new ways of teaching and inspire learning is being blocked by the unnecessarily restrictive demands of union leadership.