ORLANDO, Fla. - On the heels of a local lawsuit filed against Governor Ron DeSantis to keep kids out of school, the Florida Education Association (FEA) plans to hold a news conference Monday to also discuss possible litigation.
With more than 150,000 members representing K-12 teachers, high education professionals and students preparing to become teachers, the FEA wants to give its stance on the state’s emergency order to reopen public schools next month.
In a FOX 35 Exclusive, the state’s top pediatrician said Florida is not ready to have kids back in the classroom until the infection rate is down between 3-5 percent.
“I think no one, at least in medicine, believes that it’s safe to go back if we have a rolling average of 14.6 percent in the state,” said Dr. D. Paul Robinson, the president of the Florida Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics (FCAAP).
Dr. Robinson sent a letter to Governor Ron DeSantis that said infectious disease experts believe the rolling average of positive COVID-19 tests over a rolling two-week period should be down between 3-5 percent before kids go back to learning in classrooms five days a week.
“What we’re concerned about is that we know that if we start schools when there is a high infection rate is that more people are going to get infected and that more schools are going to shut down within just a few weeks,” Dr. Robinson said.
He said the FCAAP believes children do best in school “only in situations in which children can safely go to school.”
He sent a letter to Congress asking leaders for more federal money to get schools ready for when kids do go back to classrooms amid the pandemic.
“So far as I can tell, there have not been funds released to do that and it’s going to cost a lot of money to get the classrooms ready, to do social distancing, to use more classrooms for buses, etc.,” he said.
At 1 p.m. on Monday, the Florida Education Association will hold a news conference to discuss litigation involving the emergency order to reopen schools.
You can watch the news conference live on Fox35Orlando.com.