In the time of countering coronavirus spread in various regions, there are several actions informed by the authorities, but at the same time, the decision to reopen the schools from authorities has surged resentment among the public and especially parents. Schools across the United States are set to reopen this fall, and lots of controversies surround this move. While many people are afraid of sending their kids to schools amidst the pandemic, few others are comfortable as everything appears normal, with malls and supermarkets being opened across the country. The Trump administration and CDC had a minor spat in this regard as Trump felt that the guidelines issued by the CDC with regards to reopening of schools were impractical and expensive for schools.
Schools Across The United States Prepare To Reopen In August During The Pandemic
When schools reopen in August, things will not be the same as students, and staff members have to follow several guidelines issued by CDC and local health authorities. Sanitizers will be everywhere across the school campus, and students have to use them regularly for various activities. It will be exciting to note how students and staff members of schools react to these new norms of using sanitizers many times during the day. The authorities have issued guidelines to safeguard the health of students and save them from infection, yet they are believed as insufficient. Hence, many people are not in favor of reopening the schools in the coming days.
The cleaning department will have lots of work to do as they have to sanitize the entire premises now regularly. When it comes to small schools, they can easily do it with normal equipment or use the cloth and sanitizer sprays to clean the desks and benches in classrooms. On the other hand, cleaning large campuses can become a huge problem, and school authorities will have to depend on professional cleaning services for this task. To ensure students’ and teachers’ safety, they will have to keep on sanitizing different areas regularly.
The CDC has issued several guidelines in this regard, and schools have to take up the cleaning task several times during the week. Some of the high-risk areas like gyms and eateries may not open as of now, and it will depend on the renewed guidelines of CDC. In this situation, school authorities have to take the help of various staff members to keep the premises clean and sanitized throughout the day.
Many things are supposed to change on the campus, and even a simple water fountain may be closed due to health issues. As these are potentially high-risk spots for spreading coronavirus, students may be advised not to use them and instead stick to water bottles. Most of the public water fountains on the campus will have to be sealed as per new guidelines issued by CDC.
Monitoring the temperature of students and staff members will become the norm shortly. This is mandated by the CDC, and thermal scanners have to be used regularly for all the people in the school. When someone has a high temperature, they may not be allowed to attend school, and proper healthcare precautions have to be taken to identify COVID 19 symptoms in that case.
Sports activities will take a backseat in this situation as most activities are based on group participation of students. Apart from that, changing rooms will have to be maintained, and students have to maintain proper hygiene while practicing sports activities on the campus. Many tournaments and competitions will be postponed until the situation is under control. This is likely to continue until a proven vaccine for coronavirus is available in the market.
Students and staff members may have to wear masks at all times in the classroom and on campus. Apart from that, proper social distancing has to be maintained, and students have to sit by maintaining proper space between other students. This can be a tough task for many schools as they simply lack the space to follow such guidelines. Apart from that, some schools may not have the infrastructure to support such measures.
It is generally observed that schools with big campuses can easily manage to follow the guidelines as they can put less number of kids in each classroom and prepare more classrooms for emergency use. However, small schools are likely to suffer a lot with such measures as they will have to manage all the activities in a small space. They were not prepared for such a scenario, and this had hit them hard when they were least expecting it to happen.
The Trump administration had openly criticized the guidelines of the CDC for reopening of schools and termed them as impractical and expensive measures. However, CDC is in no mood to listen as they feel that the safety of children is more important than anything else in this pandemic situation. They even considered postponing the reopening of schools unless such safety guidelines are put into place in a practical manner. However, supporters of Trump were against it, and they were not in favor of online classes.
The Trump administration even went to the extent of giving warnings to schools that did not plan to reopen by revoking the federal government support for such schools. Many people criticized Trump for taking such measures as it forced schools to reopen in a hurry when they were still not prepared with adequate safety measures.
Even universities and colleges are facing a similar situation, and they are yet to reopen completely across the country. As cases continue to rise across the United States, it would be interesting to see the response of parents towards this move. The attendance is likely to drop by some margin as some of them are not yet convinced about the safety aspects, and any further rise in cases among children will lead to a situation where schools will be shut indefinitely till the cases are under control. In many cases, students and schools will also have to consider online classes as a backup measure soon.
With over 15 years as a practicing journalist, Nikki Attkisson found herself at Powdersville Post now after working at several other publications. She is an award-winning journalist with an entrepreneurial spirit and worked as a journalist covering technology, innovation, environmental issues, politics, health etc. Nikki Attkisson has also worked on product development, content strategy, and editorial management for numerous media companies. She began her career at local news stations and worked as a reporter in national newspapers.