Some public schools are struggling to keep enough staff on hand to remain open — a side effect of the omicron variant. But there are a few places where parents are stepping in to fill the manpower gaps, and ensure the schools their kids’ attend remain open. As Joanne Jacobs writes:

The call for parent volunteers went out at 9 pm on Sunday, reports John Fensterwald on EdSource. By 9 am Monday, 360 Palo Alto (California) parents had offered to work as classroom aides, Covid testing staff, office workers, recess and lunch supervisors, custodians or whatever else is needed to keep the community’s schools open.

By Tuesday morning, 1 Palo Alto had 670 recruits, says Superintendent Don Austin. Volunteers — the number has passed 700 — started work today.

The schools wills stay open, he pledged. “There is nothing short of a state or county mandate or order that will shut us down. And if they do that they better be ready for a fight too. We are staying open.”

They can’t just show up and start working: “Volunteers must be vaccinated and wear a mask, but do not need background checks because they won’t be alone with students.”

But this is an example of people stepping up when given the opportunity to do so. And it’s not make work — it’s real work, for a cause (their kids) that directly affects them. More of this, please.