Although Trump is pushing for in-person classes when school reopens, parents still have the right to decide whether or not such a condition is best for their children.
Actually, parents must make decisions based on their assessment of situations that can affect the safety and welfare of all family members living in the household. Simply relying on what Trump says is not the wisest way to arrive at a logical decision.
Trump asserts that based on studies of medical experts, children have strong resistance against the novel coronavirus and therefore, not expected to get infected inside a face-to-face classroom session. While Trump’s assertion is in part true, a more recent development shows that as of July 24 in Florida, more than 31,000 children under 18 years of age have all tested COVID-19 positive.
Only a week earlier, the number for the same cases was only 23,000; denoting that in a week’s time, the COVID-19 cases among Florida’s children increased by 34%. Yet the numbers are only representative of the infected children, and does not include the cluster people that the children might have infected
The problem with Trump’s insistence on face-to-face reopening of schools is that he is more concerned with America’s image of being behind the progress taking place in other countries; but with less focus on how the U.S. can stop the unceasing spread of the disease. Trump cites other countries that have already sent their children behind the desks.
Yet the countries with which Trump is making comparisons are New Zealand and Vietnam both of which have declared that they are COVID- free. While Trump includes countries like Denmark and Germany. The infection rates in these countries are now at low levels, aside from the fact that they have instituted fairly reasonable systems of testing.
What Should Parents Consider When Assessing the Risks Posed by In-Person Classes?
Other states in the U.S. are planning to hold only online classes or distance learning as initial methods in resuming classes this fall. Any plan to advance via face-to-face session will take place in 2021, most likely when a vaccine or drug against COVID-19 is already available.
In contemplating decisions on whether or not to allow one’s children to attend in-person classes, it would be wise to involve the children in the discussions. That way, you can get insights on how much they understand about the current situation and about the risks that the entire family will face if any of them gets infected.
While some parents need to go back to work, they should also consider the possibility of not being able to work if their children contract the disease.
It is also important to assess the safety measures and monitoring capabilities of their children’s school, including the school’s plan of action if ever a child who attended a class becomes infected.
The point is, merely relying on what Trump and other government officials are saying as justification for immediately holding face-to-face classes, will not suffice when making assessments.