Tuesday 4 August 2020 - 12:08

US Teachers Protest School Reopening as Virus Deaths Pass 155k

Story Code : 878317
US Teachers Protest School Reopening as Virus Deaths Pass 155k
They rallied in more than 35 school districts, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Milwaukee and Philadelphia, calling for a safe, scientific, racially just and fully funded approach to reopening schools during the outbreak of COVID-19.

The teachers and support staff demanded that schools hold off until scientific data supports such a move, safety protocols such as lower-class sizes and virus testing are established, and schools are staffed with adequate numbers of counselors and nurses, according to a website set up for the demonstrations.

They also demanded financial help for parents in need, including rent and mortgage assistance, a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures and cash assistance, Reuters said.

US President Donald Trump, who is seeking re-election in November, has made school reopenings in August and September part of his re-election campaign.

Trump is trailing in opinion polls against presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden ahead of the November election as the US continues to be ravaged by the coronavirus.

The protesting teachers said they want instruction conducted online until testing shows that classrooms are safe and districts hire more nurses and counselors.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US government’s top infectious disease expert, said Monday that US states with spiraling case numbers should consider re-imposing lockdown restrictions on residents and businesses.

The coronavirus has infected 4.6 million people in the United States and killed more than 155,000 Americans since February, according to a Reuters tally.

The virus deaths are rising in 31 states, up from 27 states a week ago, according to a Reuters analysis of the past two weeks compared with the prior two weeks.