After announcing its plan for reopening schools after the COVID-related closures, Biden’s administration is already receiving heavy criticism. On Wednesday, Jen Psaki, the White House Press Secretary, declared that Biden has a “bold and ambitious” goal of opening approximately half of all schools for one day of in-person instruction each week, starting in April. Despite the White House’s claim that this goal is ambitious, an estimated 65 percent of schools have already reopened for hybrid or in-person learning.
Psaki on the White House goal of one day of school per week by the end of the school year: Part of our “bold and ambitious agenda” pic.twitter.com/VTQw4cVmU3
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) February 10, 2021
According to data from the CDC, virtually no data supports the school reopening goals of the administration, especially since research has demonstrated overwhelming evidence that COVID poses a minuscule risk to both students and teachers within in-person learning environments.
On the other hand, chronic school closures also complicate the lives of working parents, which Nancy Macy, a GOP Congresswoman from South Carolina, indicated after the Biden administration announced its reopening goal.
Particularly for SINGLE working parents, like myself.
Parents should be making this decision. Not the government. https://t.co/d0yNkLVcuQ
— Rep. Nancy Mace (@RepNancyMace) February 10, 2021
Furthermore, the Biden administration has endured other criticism for its priorities, including the fact that it has prioritized teachers’ unions instead of students’ needs. Teachers unions have been one of the biggest stalwarts against reopening schools, arguing that schools should not be reopened for in-person learning.
However, the science illustrates that it is safe for students to return back to schools for critically important in-person learning experiences. Moreover, schools have received nearly $70B in relief to help assist with a safe reopening experience.