New petition launches out of concern that President Trump is rushing to reopen schools while Secretary Betsy DeVos lacks a plan for safely doing so
Lansing, MI - In response to recent comments by President Trump, Protect Our Public Schools (POPS) has launched a petition on Change.org. The petition demands that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos ensure schools do not open until the Department of Education develops a plan to protect students and teachers from unnecessary exposure to COVID-19. To date, the Department has not released a comprehensive plan on the subject.
President Trump repeatedly commented on Wednesday that he wants to reopen schools in the fall, telling reporters that schools should “absolutely” reopen. Trump downplayed concerns over public health and the lack of adequate testing and protective equipment. President Trump’s comments came after Dr. Anthony Fauci stressed the unknown effects and potential dangers of COVID-19 on children.
Just a few weeks ago, a child in Detroit, Michigan, died from COVID-19. And doctors are investigating more than 150 cases of a mysterious inflammatory condition linked to COVID-19 in children. These reports have raised serious concern that children might be at a higher risk of complications from the disease than previously thought.
On the topic of reopening schools, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s spokesperson has recently stated that the Secretary believes “local leaders are positioned to make reopening decisions in consultation with local health officials,” but Secretary DeVos has provided neither guidance nor the necessary resources to safely do so.
“This kind of willful neglect is emblematic of Education Secretary DeVos’s leadership at the Education Department. She has a long history of directing resources towards her pet causes. Yet she ignores the most pressing problems facing our schools – particularly for rural and special needs children. As President Trump demands we reopen schools against the advice of medical experts, Secretary DeVos must ensure schools don’t open until it is safe. The safety of school children is her responsibility,” said Ellen Offen, Vice President of POPS.
About Protect Our Public Schools
Michigan public schools are under attack from greedy corporate interests and anti-public school ideologues. Protect Our Public Schools is a community of teachers, retired educators, students, parents, and citizens who are dedicated to protecting our public schools. Protect Our Public Schools operates as a section 501(c)(4) tax exempt organization.