Florida Governor: States Closing Schools During Omicron Are Being ‘Absurd’
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Governor Ron DeSantis recently expressed opposition to potential mandates, school closures, or stay-at-home protocols, stating that schools are safe as long as they adhere to safety guidelines.
During a press conference on January 5th, DeSantis stated that he does not anticipate any new mandates in the near future, despite the surge in COVID cases and the rapid spread of the highly transmissible omicron variant in Florida and other areas.
DeSantis deemed the imposition of any type of mandate on individuals as unreasonable. He referenced the closure of schools in Georgia and North Carolina, deeming it absurd. He questioned if we have not learned anything from past experiences.
Although the press conference was intended to announce funding for infrastructure and job growth, the focus shifted towards COVID.
DeSantis urged Floridians to continue testing and assured them that home tests from the Biden administration would be distributed soon. The initial recipients of these home tests would be senior citizens in Florida, eliminating the need for them to wait in long lines for COVID testing, as stated by the governor.
In addition, DeSantis downplayed the severity of the omicron variant, comparing it to the flu. He advised teachers and students who feel unwell to stay home.
According to the Miami Herald, numerous teachers in Miami-Dade public schools are calling in sick, causing concerns for educators, families, and residents of Florida.
Based on reported data from January 4th across a seven-day period (December 28th – January 3rd), Florida witnessed a rise in COVID cases, reaching 380,759 infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This places Florida as the state with the second-highest number of cases, just behind New York (including cases from New York City and New York State).
Overall, Florida has accumulated a total of 4.36 million COVID cases, trailing behind only Texas and California.
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