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Fact Sheet - President Donald J. Trump Is Supporting America's Students and Families By Encouraging the Safe Reopening of America's Schools

August 12, 2020

We believe many school districts can now reopen safely, provided they implement mitigation measures and health protocols to protect families, protect teachers, and to protect students. --President Donald J. Trump

SUPPORTING SAFE REOPENINGS: President Donald J. Trump is advocating for schools to safely reopen this fall to ensure our Nation's children receive optimal education and care.

  • By supporting the resumption of in-person schooling, President Trump is standing up for the well-being of American children who need to get back in the classroom and working parents.
  • Children are at an extremely low risk for a serious illness or death from COVID-19, far less than adults and even less than from seasonal influenza.
  • The social costs to children and families of keeping schools closed in terms of harm to children's wellbeing outweigh the risks presented by the safe reopening of in-person classes.
    • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has called for the safe reopening of schools this fall and for in-person classes to resume, citing how schools reduce a child's risk of abuse, drug addiction, and suicide.
    • The AAP has also found that school closures have a "substantial impact on food security and physical activity for children and families."
  • The overwhelming majority of public K-12 teachers are young – 92% are under 60 years of age – and in the absence of certain underlying medical conditions are likely at lower risk for serious illness, hospitalization, or death.
    • Teachers and students who are at increased risk or higher risk can be protected, and if desired, can choose to work from home.

PUTTING AMERICAN CHILDREN AND FAMILIES FIRST: President Trump's support to reopen schools is based on science, data, and common sense.

  • The unintended consequences of keeping schools closed could damage our children's education for years to come and hinder our Nation's economic comeback.
  • Cancelling in-person classes and allowing only virtual learning disproportionally harms the education of lower income children.
    • During school closures in the spring, students' math progress in low-income zip codes decreased by roughly 50% and students in middle-income zip codes fell by a third.
    • A recent analysis found that if in-person classes don't resume until January 2021, Hispanic, Black, and low income students will lose 9.2, 10.3, and 12.4 months of learning, respectively.
  • Each and every parent needs the confidence that when they are on the job their children will be well cared for.
    • Over 90% of children aged 6-17 have at least one employed parent – many of whom will have to stay home and care for their child if schools fail to reopen.
  • Peer countries have sufficiently reopened schools to better educate their children, while the United States has fallen behind with continued closures – potentially leaving our country and our children with a competitive disadvantage.
  • The education of children is more than an essential business – it's a top national priority to ensure America can continue to aggressively compete with the rest of the world.

GIVING VITAL ASSISTANCE: President Trump is giving all students and educators the tools and resources they need to continue learning and teaching.

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided comprehensive guidelines to schools on how to protect and identify high-risk individuals, prevent the spread of the virus, and conduct safe in-person teaching.
  • The President has called for Congress to pass $105 billion – $70 billion of which is for K-12 schools – to provide financial assistance and incentives to help schools implement safety measures in their resumption of in-person classes.
  • President Trump is also calling on Congress to pass the School Choice Now Act, which includes his groundbreaking Education Freedom Scholarships proposal, to give students and families the resources and power to select the right education setting for them.
  • President Trump delivered $13 billion in funding to states to support K-12 education, which can be used to help schools safely reopen.
  • The Trump Administration also applauds many States that have utilized Federal CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Fund dollars to prioritize the safe reopening of schools.
  • The Trump Administration is also working on a plan to provide millions of reusable face coverings to States for students, teachers, and staff.

Donald J. Trump, Fact Sheet - President Donald J. Trump Is Supporting America's Students and Families By Encouraging the Safe Reopening of America's Schools Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/343358

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