President Donald Trump said Tuesday his administration will pressure governors to reopen state schools in the fall.
Speaking at a White House event, Trump said the country has to get back on its feet and opening schools is one clear indicator that the U.S. has bounced back.
“We don’t want people to make political statements or do it for political reasons, they think it’s gonna be good for them politically, so they keep the schools closed, no way,” Trump said.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis earlier announced plans to reopen schools starting August. Trump said, “So, we are very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools.”
Trump also claimed that everyone is in favor of resuming classes in the fall. “Everybody wants it, the moms want it, the dads want it, the kids want it,” the president said.
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said they have the tools to reopen schools across the U.S.
“We’re at a very different place now than when we were 2 or 3 months ago,” Azar said noting that the country’s mortality rate for coronavirus infections is “among the lowest if not the lowest in the developed world.”
The president also said that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has urged officials to allow in-person teaching inside classrooms.
“After weighing what we know about children and the coronavirus, we really strongly advocate that the goal should be to have students physically present in the school,” AAP President Dr. Sara Goza said.
President Trump also maintains that the COVID-19 death rate in America was down “ten-fold” thanks to promising therapeutics.
“We will put out the fires as they come up but we have to open up our schools,” Trump said.