Rochelle Walensky, who has been nominated to function director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, speaks after US President-elect Joe Biden introduced his staff tasked with coping with the Covid-19 pandemic at The Queen in Wilmington, Delaware on December 8, 2020.
Jim Watson | AFP | Getty Images
Teachers don’t must get vaccinated in opposition to Covid-19 earlier than schools can safely reopen, the pinnacle of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated Wednesday.
“There is increasing data to suggest that schools can safely reopen and that safe reopening does not suggest that teachers need to be vaccinated,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky instructed reporters throughout a White House information briefing on Covid-19.
“Vaccinations of teachers is not a prerequisite for safely reopening schools,” she added.
The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted to place “frontline essential workers,” which embrace teachers, subsequent in line to obtain a Covid-19 vaccine after first prioritizing health-care employees and long-term care facility residents. However, it could take some time for many teachers to get their pictures as U.S. officers work to choose up the tempo of vaccinations.
Still, college programs throughout the U.S. have been underneath strain to reopen after shifting to distant studying final 12 months because of the coronavirus pandemic, which has contaminated greater than 26.four million Americans and killed no less than 447,077 in just a little over a 12 months.
Some dad and mom have been compelled to remain at residence to observe their kids as an alternative of going to work. Meanwhile, teachers and different college have expressed issues about returning to high school, doubtlessly placing their well being in danger.
A examine from the CDC revealed late final month discovered little proof of the virus spreading at schools within the U.S. and overseas when precautions had been taken, equivalent to sporting masks, social distancing and ventilating rooms.
The Biden administration has launched a Covid rescue plan that features offering schools and universities with $170 billion to reopen. The cash could be utilized in half to scale up testing. The administration has stated testing is a “critical” technique for controlling the unfold of the virus, however added exams are nonetheless not broadly accessible, and the U.S. continues to be not utilizing those it has successfully.
Walensky has beforehand stated that schools ought to be the primary to open and the final to shut within the pandemic.
Jeff Zients, President Joe Biden’s Covid-19 czar, stated Wednesday that Biden has been “very clear” that he needs schools to “reopen and to stay open.”
“That means every school has the equipment and the resources to open safely,” he stated throughout the information briefing, urging Congress to “do its part” by passing Biden’s Covid rescue plan. “Not just private schools or schools in wealthy areas but all schools.”