Dr. Fauci calls for state governments to reopen the schools

The Trump administration has been pushing to reopen schools since the summer.


Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top doctor on President Donald Trump's coronavirus taskforce, called for schools to remain open during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in an appearance on ABC News.

"The default position should be to try as best as possible within reason to keep the children in school or to get them back to school," Fauci told the ABC anchor, commenting on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's decision to once again close schools in response to the pandemic.

Fauci further suggested that the best way to keep schools safe from coronavirus is to keep the level of community spread low. "If you look at the data the spread among children and from children is not really big at all," Fauci argued.

The Trump administration has been pushing to reopen schools since the summer, stating in a July press conference that "what we want to do is we want to get our schools open.  We want to get them open quickly, beautifully, in the fall."

The First Lady, who also spoke at the press conference, also expressed support for reopening schools. "When children are out of school, they are missing more than just time in the classroom," said Melania Trump. "They’re missing the laughter of their friends, learning from their teachers, and the joy of recess and play."

The President's position was not acclaimed by the media, with journalists from CNN accusing the President of "[playing] with kids' lives" and describing the Trump administration's position as dangerous.

The Centre for Disease Control affirmed the Trump administration's position at the time as well, warning of "significant public health consequences" if schools were not reopened in the fall. "I think it's important to realize that it's in the public health best interest of K-12 students to get back to face-to-face learning" CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield told the House Select Subcommittee.

Dr. Redfield pointed out that since the closure of schools, reports of child abuse to authorities have significantly declined even as rates of child abuse increase, leaving more children in unsafe environments, a phenomenon which Redfield says is "a direct consequence of the school closures." Redfield commented that millions of kids across the United States receive their mental health support from their schools, as well as nutritional support. He also told the subcommittee that rates of drug abuse and suicide have risen among adolescents since the start of the pandemic.

De Blasio warned as he closed schools across New York City that the positivity rate had reached 3% among those tested within the general population. When the announcement was made, the positivity rate among school children was a mere 0.16%.


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