On Wednesday, US President Donald Trump called upon governors across the nation, urging them to work towards reopening schools that were shut down due to the deadly COVID-19.
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Trump's comments come a day after Dr Anthony Fauci warned against moving too quickly in sending students back to class. The president accused Fauci, one of the country's top infectious disease expert of wanting “to play all sides of the equation."
While talking to reporters at the White House, Trump said, “I think they should open the schools, absolutely. I think they should. Our country’s got to get back and it’s got to get back as soon as possible. And I don’t consider our country coming back if the schools are closed.”
On Tuesday, Fauci, before a Senate committee urged caution but also made it clear that he believes reopening decisions will likely differ from one region to the next.
“We don’t know everything about this virus and we really better be pretty careful, particularly when it comes to children,” Fauci told the committee. He said, “the idea of having treatments available or a vaccine to facilitate the re-entry of students into the fall term would be something that would be a bit of a bridge too far.”
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He later clarified that he did not mean that students should not return to class until a vaccine is developed but his comments were nonetheless interpreted otherwise by conservative commentators, as well as Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who called the notion “kind of ridiculous.”