As we inch closer to August, the debate on whether to reopen schools is heating up. Now, local members of Congress are speaking out, some insisting school should stay closed.
“Until they figure it out, they have to leave the children sheltered at home,” Rep. Frederica Wilson said.
“In my community, we have community spread,” Rep. Donna Shalala said during her virtual news conference Tuesday. “That means that the virus is out of control.”
Shalala’s guest at the news conference was Nyree Washington, a teacher at Coral Reef Senior High School. She insisted the state lacks a plan for going back into the school buildings.
“We would have challenges with PPE, we would have challenges with keeping our schools clean, we would have challenges with having adequate staff to increase the sanitization of the school,” Washington said. “We had those challenges before COVID."
A recent survey shows 44% of Miami-Dade parents prefer online learning, while 55% prefer in-class instruction.
Miami-Dade Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho insists that when school begins, the COVID-19 positivity rate in Miami-Dade be below 10% and heading down.
Meantime, Florida’s largest teachers union is suing the state, asking a judge to stay the emergency order to open school buildings next month.
Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran issued the order, and addressed the lawsuit with a prepared statement.
“This E.O. did not order any new directives regarding the requirements of schools to be open, it simply created new innovative options for families to have the CHOICE to decide what works best for the health and safety of their student and family,” the statement read.
In Broward County Superintendent Robert Runcie is expected to update school board members Wednesday morning on his plan for opening schools.