President Trump spoke out against the extended closure of schools and suggested that schools that remain closed should have their funds reallocated to the parents of children who would otherwise be in school.
“If schools do not reopen, the funding should go to parents to send their child to public, private, charter, religious, or homeschool of their choice,” Trump said during a Thursday press conference.
“…If the school is closed, the money should follow the student so the parents and families are in control of their own decisions. So we’d like the money to go to the parents of the student. This way, they can make the decision that’s best for them.”
President Trump acknowledged the adverse ramifications of keeping schools closed:
“Lengthy time away from school and associated interruption of supportive services often results in social isolation, making it difficult for schools to identify and address important learning deficits as well as child and adolescent physical or sexual abuse, substance use, depression, and suicidal ideation.”
Last week, the CDC also included guidance to open schools and, like Trump, said that extended isolation from social interaction can negatively impact children’s development.
From the CDC website:
Aside from a child’s home, no other setting has more influence on a child’s health and well-being than their school. The in-person school environment does the following:
- provides educational instruction;
- supports the development of social and emotional skills;
- creates a safe environment for learning;
- addresses nutritional needs; and
- facilitates physical activity.