Orange County schools to reopen in August amid pandemic, Angry Internet calls them 'conscienceless ghouls'
Students and teachers will be able to attend classes without donning masks or practicing social distancing
The debate over reopening schools during the pandemic has resulted in the Orange County Board of Education voting in favor, with in-person teaching starting next month. Students and teachers will be able to attend classes without donning masks or practicing social distancing. In the wake of the board's decision, many parents and teachers gathered outside of the meeting location on July 13 and protested the idea of children returning to school without safety precautions. Others were in support of the board's final verdict.
The Board of Education held a meeting with experts in June, who concluded that requiring students to wear masks "is not only difficult but may even be harmful over time.” It also asserted that “social distancing of children and reduction of classroom size and census may be considered, but not vital to implement for school-aged children,” and advised that parents “are in the best position to determine the education environment that best suits their children rather than government officials.”
If a school district “is unable or unwilling to reopen schools in a manner that resumes a typical classroom environment and school atmosphere, parents should be allowed to send their children to another school district or charter school that will provide that preferred education,” the experts said. “In fact, many parents stated they will opt for private schools or homeschooling if their child does not have a typical interactive academic classroom environment.”
As a safety measure, the experts advised regular temperature checks and encouraged “good hygiene with frequent hand washing and the use of hand sanitizer, along with the cleaning of classrooms, meeting rooms, buses, and administrative offices nightly. The experts also concluded in the panel discussion that teachers are more likely to contract the infection from another teacher or staff member and not the children.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has also been pushing for the opening of schools across the country by November, in an effort to thwart the decline in his poll numbers, fourth months ahead of Election Day. Last week he claimed in a Twitter post that Democrat's presumptive nominee Joe Biden doesn't want schools to reopen this fall for political reasons. He also criticized the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to loosen its prevention guidelines. "They think it’s going to be good for them politically, so they keep the schools closed," Trump said at a White House discussion on schools' plans for the fall on July 8, according to the Associated Press. "No way. We’re very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools."
Betsy DeVos, the Secretary of Education told Fox News on July 12: "But the key is, there has to be a posture of doing something, of action, of getting things going, putting a plan together for your specific school, for your specific district or for your classroom that ensures that kids are going to start learning against this fall." Following the board's announcement, social media users took to Twitter to slam Orange County's education authority for putting more lives at risk. Many now deem Orange County as the 'Florida of California.'
"The Orange County Board will be DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE for the deaths of thousands! These conscience-less ghouls!" a rankled user commented. "Orange County really is the Florida of California. I hope teachers go on strike and don’t show up to teach," wrote another. "We no longer claim Orange County as part of California. We would like to past them to Florida," a user said, while another quipped, "Can we send Orange County to Arizona? We don’t need anything back though, we’ll send them over free of charge."
"I live in Orange County. They are all deniers. Please help me," said an Orange County resident in a tweet. "Orange County is no longer needed. Thank you," another user tweeted. "Orange County really going for heard immunity and survival of the fittest. Where is the conch?" said one irked user and another one raged: "Orange county board of education out to kill their kids by reopening school no masks/sding and then theyre gonna be like why are our kids dying!! idk b***h maybe bc u voted to reopen ? it? whats wrong with you !! florida come take orange county away from here."