On July 7, U.S. President Donald Trump called for the reopening of schools as COVID-19 cases reached new grave milestones in the country. This was followed by teaching professionals, school administrators, and parents expressing their concerns about the safety of children and staff returning to school, staging nationwide protests.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a hybrid back-to-school plan with most students inside their physical schools just two or three days a week sometime this fall.
De Blasio says his plan calls for most students learning online at least half the time because schools can't accommodate all their students and maintain safe social distancing to avoid spreading the coronavirus.
Teachers at the protest said not enough has been done to make sure schools are safe for students and teachers.
"There's no teacher who wants to be working from home behind a computer all day, while also having to provide for their own families in real time. No one wants that. But we don't want to come back to a place that's putting our lives at risk," teacher Karla Reyes said, who joined the march in New York on Monday.
The march went from teachers union headquarters down to the Department of Education.
Rallies took place in more than 25 U.S. states on Monday. Thousands of parents, educators and students participated virtually and in person.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said school reopening is up to him and he wants to wait and watch before a final decision is made.