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COVID: Group Calls Berkeley Teachers' Union Leader A Hypocrite For Taking Child To Private Preschool

BERKELEY (KPIX 5) -- An East Bay teacher and union leader is under fire Monday, accused of being a hypocrite in the fight to reopen schools only after teachers have been vaccinated.

Video released by the anonymous back to school advocacy group called "Guerilla Momz" shows a man the group says is Matt Meyer, president of the Berkeley Federation of Teachers, dropping his child off at a private preschool.

Meyer and the union have been staunchly fighting for students to return to full-time, in-person instruction only after teachers have received the COVID vaccine.

While Meyer is not commenting on the video, he did confirm to the East Bay Times that his two-year-old daughter does attend private preschool, adding that there are no public options for children her age.

As for his advocacy of teachers receiving the COVID-19 vaccination, at a Berkeley Unified school board meeting about a month ago, Meyer pushed for teachers to get vaccinated so children could safely return to the classroom.

"Teachers are not asking to jump the line. However, we do know our community is beyond anxious about the timeline to returning to some form of in person learning many Berkeley students and their families are stressed and suffering. Their teachers are as well," said Meyer. "We all know there is no substitute for being in a safe and healthy classroom."

Jonathan Zachreson, founder of the organization Reopen California Schools, told KPIX 5 the video may show hypocrisy, but he noted Meyer isn't alone.

"I'm not that surprised. And you know he's not the only one doing this," said Zachreson. "There's school board members to politicians -- including Gavin Newsom -- who have their kids in in-person learning right now when many others students in public school are not."

In response to a KPIX request for a statement Guerilla Momz sent a message that said, "We want our schools open today, five days a week, just as city, county and California public health has said we can safely do today. Other districts around us are open, have been open for months and intend to move to 5 days a week. Berkeley children's right to a free public education have been violated for a year."

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