Florida Gov. DeSantis Mulls Reopening Schools Amid Pandemic

The virus 'doesn't seem to threaten' children, he adds
April 10, 2020 Updated: April 10, 2020

Florida Gov. DeSantis on Thursday suggested there is a possibility that schools in his state could reopen in May after closures were ordered in March in a bid to curb the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re going to look at the evidence and make a decision,” DeSantis said of whether schools could reopen, reported the Tampa Bay Times.

The governor said that he doesn’t believe that most people under the age of 25 are susceptible to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) virus, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

“This particular pandemic is one where, I don’t think nationwide there’s been a single fatality under 25. For whatever reason it just doesn’t seem to threaten, you know, kids,” DeSantis said, reported CNN.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that four people between the ages of 15 and 24 have died from the CCP virus in the United States, while one individual under the age of 5 has died from COVID-19. None of the deaths occurred in Florida.

Zaandam cruise ship patient
Rescue workers push a stretcher with a patient from the Zaandam of the Holland America Line cruise ship, afflicted with COVID-19 at Broward Heatlh Medical Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on April 2, 2020. (Marco Bello/Reuters)

“And we lose in Florida between five and 10 kids a year for the flu. This one, for whatever reason, much more dangerous if you’re 65 and plus than the flu, no doubt about that. If you’re younger, it just hasn’t had an impact, so that should factor into how we’re viewing this. I think the data on that has been 100 percent consistent,” DeSantis said, according to CNN. “I’ve not seen any deviation on that.”

The CDC has noted that younger people tend to display less severe COVID-19 symptoms than elderly people or those with underlying health problems.

In Florida, more than 16,000 people in the state have tested positive for the virus, and 350 fatalities have been confirmed, researchers from Johns Hopkins University said.

DeSantis added that schools could reopen, saying that “if it’s safe we want kids to be in school. … Even if it’s for a couple of weeks, we think there would be value in that,” the Tampa Bay Times reported. “It may be that not every county is going to be treated the same in all this,” he added.

President Donald Trump has said he is looking to re-opening the United States economy, adding that he feels the economy will surge when that happens.

“We’re also seeing encouraging signs in our race to develop breakthrough treatment therapies. Pfizer revealed today that it has found a promising new treatment that might prevent the virus from replicating,” he said on Thursday. “So we have 19 therapies being tested currently. There are 26 more in the active planning stages for clinical trials. That’s a statement. That’s a lot.”