‘We want schools to be open,’ White House says as Chicago cancels classes
The challenge of reopening schools for in-person instruction amid a coronavirus surge fueled by the Omicron variant deepened on Wednesday, with Chicago teachers refusing to return to the classroom after a union vote Tuesday night. The city’s school superintendent in turn declined to allow them to teach remotely, instead canceling school for 330,000 children in the nation’s third-largest school district.
President Biden has repeatedly said he wants schools to stay open, in recognition of the damage that remote learning has done to children and the low risk of transmission in schools. “The president couldn’t be clearer — schools in this country should remain open,” White House pandemic response team coordinator Jeff Zients said during a press briefing on Wednesday.