Five Pediatricians on Coronavirus: ‘Benefits of Being in the Classroom Far Outweigh the Risk of the Disease’
“I have no concerns about sending my child to school in the fall.”
I believe education is the most local issue. I’m not even talking state or city. Education should be up to the school districts.
But we have a Department of Education, which thinks America could reopen schools in the fall. The left has demonized President Donald Trump and Secretary Betsy DeVos, yet it seems a few pediatricians agree with them.
Respiratory viruses usually affect children first. This isn’t the case with coronavirus:
In the U.S., children make up about 22 percent of the population, but kids account for only 2 percent of coronavirus cases so far, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
It’s not yet known what accounts for that disparity, said Dr. C. Buddy Creech, an associate professor of pediatrics at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee.
“This has been a strange pandemic because usually for respiratory viruses, children are the first and most substantially affected,” Creech said. “This has really been a flip of that, where it’s our adults, and particularly older adults, that have been more affected.”
The children infected by the coronavirus rarely “develop serious complications or require hospitalization.”
So should schools reopen?
NBC News interviewed five pediatricians. All five of them said they would put their kids back in the classroom.
Five pediatricians interviewed by @NBCNightlyNews agree the benefits of being in school “far outweigh” the risks of #COVID19 for students. All 5 plan to send their kids back to school in the fall. We can reopen schools safely & ensure learning continues. https://t.co/bnRUB1S6vq
— Secretary Betsy DeVos (@BetsyDeVosED) July 14, 2020
The pediatricians told NBC’s Dr. John Torres that “the benefits of being the classroom far outweigh the risk of the disease.” They all agreed “the key is to reopen safely.”
The pediatricians responded to Torres:
- Dr. Yvonne Mondonado, California: “I would let my kids go back to school.”
- Dr. Shilpa Patel, New Jersey: “I will, my kids are looking forward to it.”
- Dr. William Raszka, Vermont: “Yes. Period. Absolutely.”
- Dr. Jennifer Lighter, New York: “Absolutely, as much as I can. Without hesitation, yes.”
- Dr. Buddy Creech, Tennessee: “I have no concerns about sending my child to school in the fall.”
Schools can achieve social distancing by “keeping desks apart, increasing classroom air flow, and putting gym classes outdoors.”
Masks are important mainly for grades where students change classrooms for subjects.
Schools provide more than education. The social aspect is important, especially for younger children.
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