'Based on science:' Joe Biden outlines ‘roadmap’ to ‘safely’ reopen schools

WILMINGTON, Del. -- Joe Biden on Friday, July 17 announced a five-step guideline "based on science" to support local decision-making on reopening schools to help students whose learning was interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The presumptive Democratic nominee’s roadmap comes as school systems across the country are facing difficult decisions on how they’ll reopen amid the outbreak -- and as President  DonaldTrump has repeatedly urged that schools reopen even though new coronavirus cases are on the rise in much of the country and many states are pausing or reversing their moves to relax coronavirus restrictions.

In a video that was released with his plan, the former vice president emphasized that “everyone wants their schools to be reopen. The question is how to make it safe, how to make it stick.”

And slamming President Trump, Biden stressed that “forcing educators and students back into a classroom in areas where the infection rate is going up or remaining very high is just plain dangerous."

Jill Biden, the former vice president’s wife and a longtime educator and community college professor, joined her husband in the video and noted that “schools and parents alike want a clear science-based strategy. Not mixed messages and ultimatums."

Biden’s plan urges “emergency” funding for public schools to address $30 billion in need of more personal protective equipment (PPE), sanitation products, custodial services, alterations to ventilation systems and classroom structure. Biden’s also requesting $4 billion more for upgrading technologies.