“If you look at the data,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ top infectious disease expert, said Sunday, the spread of COVID-19 “among children and from children is not really very big at all. Not like one would have suspected.” That’s why he supports trying to keep kids in school, he told ABC News’ Martha Raddatz.
Instead of shuttering classrooms, Fauci said, the best way to keep children safe from contracting or spreading the coronavirus is to curb community spread. So while there’s no “one size fits all approach,” he suggested bars and restaurants with indoor dining, rather than schools, are places where the virus really thrives. “If you mitigate the things that you know are causing spread in a very, very profound way, a robust way,” he said, “you will then indirectly and ultimately protect the children in the school.”
“Close the bars and keep the schools open,” Dr. Anthony Fauci says, adding that while there is no solution that is “one size fits all,” the “best way to ensure the safety of the children in school is to get the community level of the spread low.” https://t.co/txCs2tyc80 pic.twitter.com/6IAyd3q4U7
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) November 29, 2020
As it turns out New York City, which reignited the debate about school closures this month, is shifting more toward that strategy, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sunday. The city’s public schools all closed earlier this month when coronavirus testing hit a 3 percent positivity rate even though classroom transmission remained low, prompting ample criticism, especially because bars and restaurants remained open.
Elementary schools will reopen in New York next week, although only students who have already signed up for in-person learning will be eligible. And while middle schools and high schools will remain shut for now, de Blasio said he is revamping how the city manages the education system during the pandemic. Read more at The New York Times. Tim O’Donnell