CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – During a news conference in Corpus Christi to discuss how officials are responding to Hurricane Hanna, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott took some time to address some questions regarding back-to-school concerns.
According to Abbott, the only constant about COVID-19 is that it constantly changes, so the government also has to be flexible in its decisions, including the choice to allow schools to reopen as they see fit.
“We have a duty to ensure we do not lose a generation of students because of this pandemic,” Abbott said. “We have an obligation to step up and make sure they are educated.”
Abbott said that pediatricians all recommend children learn in a classroom because that is the best learning environment, therefore the state wants to ensure students have access to in-person learning.
Being able to give students the best education is going to require flexibility, which is why the Texas Education Agency has provided districts across the state with the ability to choose when the school year begins and whether it begins online or in the classroom, Abbott said.
“There are so many different factors that differ from one school to another,” Abbott said. “(That) is exactly why the best decision-making authority is going to be the local school board ... with the benefit of input from both local public health authorities as well as state health authorities.”
According to Abbott, the first priority in this education year is the safety and health of students, teachers and parents.
“We will do whatever is necessary to achieve that goal, whether it be when school begins after four weeks, after eight weeks or after 10 weeks.”
You can watch the full news conference below:
🔴 WATCH LIVE: Gov. Greg Abbott visits Corpus Christi following Hurricane HannaPosted by KPRC2 / Click2Houston on Tuesday, July 28, 2020