‘We are not turning back’: Gov. Ron DeSantis says schools will remain open despite CDC guidance
Ron DeSantis. Image via Colin Hackley.

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DeSantis called the CDC guidance a 'disgrace.'

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday said Florida schools will remain open despite the latest health guidelines released by federal health officials.

“We have been open, we will remain open and we are not turning back,” DeSantis told reporters at the Florida Capitol. 

The Governor’s vow comes after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday released new COVID-19 guidance for schools.

Under the guidance, the CDC recommends hybrid, remote or virtual learning based on levels of community spread. 

DeSantis contended the measures would shutter thousands of schools, many of which are already open for in-person learning. He estimated the guidance would shut down nearly 90% of schools nationwide.

“These kids have been out of school in parts of this country for almost a year and if you follow that CDC guidance, they will not go back in this school year and they may not even go back in the fall,” DeSantis prognosticated. 

“That is a disgrace, that is not science,” DeSantis continued. “That is putting politics ahead of what’s right for kids. That is putting politics and special interests ahead of what the evidence and observed experience says.”

Notably, DeSantis crusaded to reopen schools during the early stages of the pandemic. 

In July, Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran issued an emergency order requiring schools to reopen in August for in-person classes. 

Though the order was met with pushback from teacher unions, DeSantis contended schools are safe and warned about the negative impacts of closures.

House Speaker Chris Sprowls echoed the Governor’s sentiment. 

“It is inhumane not to allow children to go back into the classroom to get an education,” Sprowls told reporters.

Last week, Sprowls encouraged school superintendents to locate and re-enroll Florida students who’ve vanished from classrooms amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Sprowls said full-time student membership has decreased by more than 87,000 students statewide. 

“Every day that goes by that those children are not learning, they’re falling behind,” Sprowls said alongside the Governor on Monday. “Every day that they fall behind, we fall behind and that’s why it’s been such a big priority for this Governor, and for the members of the Legislature to get the kids back in the classroom.”

Parents retain the option to allow in-person or remote learning. 

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the state capital for Florida Politics. After a stint with the U.S. Army, Jason attended the University of Central Florida where he studied American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. Throw him a line at [email protected] or on Twitter at @JasonDelgadoFL.


5 comments

  • TK

    February 15, 2021 at 5:16 pm

    I am glad our schools are open. Kids are doing fantastic!

  • Sonja Fitch

    February 16, 2021 at 5:40 am

    Schools are struggling through the pandemic. Research says it is possible! Our problem is that Duffus Desantis is using the children to spread covid and its mutants to other folks with the perverted Nazi herd immunity bs. Open schools year round to catch our children up on lost education standards. Vote Democrat up and down ballot for the 2022 elections!

  • James Robert Miles

    February 16, 2021 at 7:52 am

    DeSatan doesn’t care about how many people he kills. He is towing the GOP party line ala Trump. The fascist GOP has become America’s terrorist party. They do it so well. DeSatan is already running for President and will give his good buddy Trump a run for his money.

  • Tammy

    February 16, 2021 at 8:15 am

    I think Gov DeSantis is doing a great job. Kids need to be in school and parents need to be able to go to work. Virtual or distant learning is not working for many children. I’m glad Gov. DeSantis is not backing down.

  • Sonja Fitch

    February 17, 2021 at 4:54 am

    A good job of implementing Nazi herd immunity! A good job of using our children as spreaders of covid and the mutants. Our children are more important than Duffus Desantis using them. It is critical that we get our children to schools. But it take precautions like used by the NFL to protect our communities. Vote Democrat up and down ballot for the election in 2022!

Comments are closed.


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