WASHINGTON, D.C. (NEXSTAR) — For many students, school is supposed to start in less than a month, but questions remain about how school districts re-open safely, if at all.
President Donald Trump has announced plans to get kids back into class, even as the pandemic continues to rage.
Even as coronavirus cases surge in more than 30 states, Trump wants the country’s classrooms full again.
“We want to get them open quickly, beautifully in the fall,” Trump said.
And at a White House summit Tuesday, the president said it’s up to states to make re-opening happen on schedule.
“We’re very much going to put pressure on governors to open the schools,” Trump said.
The president didn’t say what that pressure would be.
And a senior administration official didn’t comment specifically on whether that includes withholding federal education money for schools that stay closed.
“It’s important that we are on the same page with the federal government and what the president and vice-president is trying to do and what we’re trying to do in the states,” said Missouri Republican Gov. Mike Parson.
Parson was at theWhite House and agrees officials need to get students back to school.
“And just realize that COVID-19 is going to be there,” Parson said.
Some experts, like Dr. Anthony Fauci, said even with federal guidelines, each school district or state needs to make its own decisions.
“So you don’t want to be risking the health of the children or their families, but you’ve got to follow the guidelines depending upon the level and the penetrance of infection in the community,” Fauci said.
Fauci added schools should think about part-time re-openings, mask wearing, and increasing the distance between desks.
“It’s not going to be one-size-fits-all,” Fauci said.