Health Experts, Public Officials Weigh In On Reopening Schools

Headline Roundup July 20th, 2020

Many schools transitioned to online schoolrooms after the coronavirus outbreak in mid-March; now, as back-to-school season approaches, public officials, health experts and educators weigh in on the debate surrounding in-person classrooms. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and other health organizations released a statement July 10 advocating for the safe reopening of schools. The statement recognized that while children learn best when physically present in a classroom, "a one-size-fits-all approach is not appropriate for return to school decisions." Studies report that children who contracted the virus were less likely to transmit the disease to people they contact; are more likely to be asymptomatic or have mild symptoms; and generally recover fully in 1-2 weeks.

Voices from the right, including Missouri Gov. Mike Parsons, tended to focus on studies showing how quickly children can recover from the virus. Coverage from left- and center-rated outlets generally concentrated on the fact that while children were more likely to recover from the virus or be asymptomatic, the purpose of remote schooling is to protect children from catching the virus and spreading it to teachers and family members.

Health Experts, Public Officials Weigh In On Reopening Schools

From the Left

(CNN) -- Missouri Republican Gov. Mike Parson doesn't understand what the big deal is about sending children back to school in the fall.

"These kids have got to get back to school," Parson told a conservative talk radio host. "They're at the lowest risk possible. And if they do get Covid-19, which they will -- and they will when they go to school -- they're not going to the hospitals. They're not going to have to sit in doctor's offices. They're going to go home and they're going to get...

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From the Right

As the fall months approach, many parents and guardians of children that normally would be returning to school are caught in the limbo of reopenings, unsure whether their local school district will resume in-person classes due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Some school districts have announced that they will reopen schools with a hybrid model. Seminole County in Florida, for example, will give parents the option of enrolling their students in face-to-face learning, online learning, or a mix of multiple options. Volusia County, Florida expects to give parents multiple options,...

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From the Center

As school districts around the country reveal reopening guidelines for when students return to classrooms in the fall, many parents are concerned about how the coronavirus could affect their children.

The White House has provided confusing statements. Press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Thursday "science should not stand in the way" of schools reopening, though "science is on our side."

A compilation of studies and articles published in JAMA Pediatrics found most patients under the age of 18 with COVID-19, the illness caused by SARS-CoV-2, have mild symptoms and fully recover...

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