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New CDC guidelines emphasize schools reopening in the fall

One of the CDC's primary arguments for reopening schools this fall is that K-12 students are less likely to get COVID-19 than adults

The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention released safety guidelines for reopening schools, noting that children are less likely to contract COVID-19. However, the CDC said Black, Hispanic and Latino children make up nearly 72% of cases in that age group. 

The director of communications at Chula Vista Elementary School District reacted.

"In a district with a high population of students of color, we are concerned of learning loss and concerned for the safety of students and parents and grandparents and our staff members," said Anthony Millican.

Millican said he has heard every concern.

Some parents sid students and staff who are high-risk should stay home and those who are low-risk should be able to attend essential classes.

He said there is no blanket solution. It ultimately comes down to one of the new CDC guidelines stating schools should examine rates of community transmission before deciding to reopen. 

"If you're in a hot spot like we are and in a state where 38 counties are on the monitoring list, then it doesn't make sense to reopen," said Millican.

The CDC also recommended that schools adopt face mask and social distancing policies and parents take the lead in monitoring their children for symptoms.

President Trump has said districts in hot spots may need to delay reopening, saying it will be up to the governors.

"Every district is unique in demographics and community transmission. It makes it difficult for the governor given the different communities we reside in," said Millican.

Trump also wants to withhold funding from schools that don't open this fall and instead give that money to families.

"If schools do not reopen, the funding should go to parents to send their child to public, private, charter, religious or home school of their choice," said the president.

The CDC ultimately suggested that if schools remain closed, the risks for students contracting and spreading coronavirus are low. However, the risks for students suffering academically and health-wise are high as schools offer vital resources that primarily aid low-income, minority or disabled students including special education services, food programs and counseling.

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