Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosHigher ed leaders warn House committee of financial strain Trump says White House will pressure governors to open schools DeVos demands ‘fully operational’ schools in the fall: ‘Not a matter of if’ MORE said Tuesday that she is “very seriously” considering withholding federal funding from schools that don’t reopen in the fall.
“We are looking at this very seriously. This is a very serious issue across the country,” DeVos told Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
DeVos recently told state leaders on a conference call that plans to allow in-person activities only a few days a week were unacceptable, arguing that another semester of remote learning would hurt students.
She told Carlson on Tuesday that fears of coronavirus transmission from public health officials was an example of “fearmongering.”
“Kids have got to continue learning, and schools have got to open up,” DeVos said. “There’s got to be a concerted effort to address the needs of all kids, and adults who are fearmongering and making excuses simply have to stop doing it and turn their attention to what is right for students and for their families.”
On Wednesday, President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Jersey incumbents steamroll progressive challengers in primaries Tucker Carlson ratchets up criticism of Duckworth, calls her a ‘coward’ Trump on Confederate flag: ‘It’s freedom of speech’ MORE threatened to cut off federal funding for schools if they do not resume in-person learning this fall and criticized the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for being too tough with its guidelines to aid that process.
The existing CDC guidance, which is voluntary, emphasizes opening safely and that schools should dismiss classes for longer than two weeks only if there is “substantial” COVID-19 spread in their communities.
The CDC is set to release another round of guidelines next week.