Education Secretary, Miguel Cardona, told MSNBC that all schools are expected to fully open in the fall.
“Students don’t learn as well remotely,” Cardona said. “There is no substitute for in-person learning.”
According to a survey from the Education Department, 54% of public schools below high school were providing full-time in-person learning.
“With regards to … September, yes, I expect all schools to be open full-time in person for all students,” Cardona said. “We really need to make sure students have the opportunity to learn in the classroom, and quite frankly, I’d rather have it this spring.”
President Joe Biden’s administration reopened a majority of K-8 schools to in-person instruction within the president’s first 100 days. The Hill reports that 40 percent of schools are fully teaching remotely and 20 percent split their time between home and the classroom.
“Until we’re at 100 percent, we must keep our foot on the gas pedal,” the Education Secretary said.
“We’re really reaching out to make sure that in places where they’re not offering in-person learning or full-time in-person learning – we want to make sure we’re supporting those states, those districts to find out why they’re not,” Cardona said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that schools should be open and that children should be seated at least three feet apart.
Cardona says that the administration relies heavily on CDC guidance.
“It’s critically important that we’re listening to our health experts because this is a health pandemic. In many cases, as we learn new information, plans change and I’ve seen school systems change plans mid-course based on new data. I’m pleased to see that those districts that were able to bring students in also did it in a way that’s safe.”