Councillor-At-Large Lapierre Offers Multiple Perspectives on School Closing Decision

Councillor-at-Large  Brian LaPierre is a parent, a former Lynn schoolteacher, and the director of organization at the American Federation of Teachers Massachusetts.

His wife, Kelly LaPierre, is an eighth-grade civics teacher at Pickering Middle School.

While “disappointed” by the news, LaPierre believes that Gov. Charlie Baker’s decision to close swas the correct one in respect to the COVID-19 global pandemic.

“I’m disappointed but totally realistic about the decision and I think it’s a wise one,” said LaPierre, whose sons, Owen and Dylan, are students in the Lynn public schools.

“I would say the building may be closed, but the learning continues.”

LaPierre praised the Lynn schoolteachers for their excellent work in educating students during the COVID-19 crisis.

“Our teachers and support staff have been remarkable in getting online and remote learning up and running in a 24-hour period back in March,” said LaPierre. “And it’s going to get better and better as we become more nimble with technology.

“There’s always going to be a learning gap when you’re not face-to-face learning with an educator in the classroom and socializing with your friends in a classroom setting, but short of that and I’m struggling with it as a parent as well – our teachers have gotten very innovative and creative around lesson planning, historical walks, time capsules, science projects, even project-based stuff that you would not have imagined happening six weeks ago.”

LaPierre said he feels bad for students who will miss important events such as the commencement and moving-on ceremonies that culminate the school years.

LaPierre said Dr. Tutwiler, school principals and the School Committee have done an outstanding job updating parents during the crisis. He is confident that students will be fully prepared to continue their education in their next grades in the fall.

“We’re all just doing what Lynn does and that’s just embracing what we have and working to do the best we can under extenuating circumstances,” concluded LaPierre.

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