LONDON — Parents, instructors and union authorities in Germany and Scandinavian nations have actually challenged President Donald Trump’s recommendation that schools in those countries were “open with no problems.”
Comparing the U.S. reaction to that of Denmark was “wrong,” Niels Larsen, an artist and the daddy of 3 school kids in the capital Copenhagen, informed NBC News on Thursday, including that the method the 2 nations had actually approached the coronavirus pandemic was “quite different.”
“We took the initial hit to our economy and the hard blows, and now we are seeing the benefits with things like the reopening of schools, so that’s where the comparison is wrong,” he stated by telephone.
Denmark was among the very first European nations to lock down, while U.S. authorities have actually been slammed for waiting too long to do so and after that opening too quick.
Commenting on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s current standards about school reopenings, Trump tweeted Wednesday that schools were being asked “to do very impractical things” as White House authorities called the standards too limiting.
Trump likewise threatened to cut off financing for schools that do not resume this fall.
Schools in “Germany, Denmark, Norway and Sweden, along with many other countries” were “open with no problems,” he stated.
German authorities stated that there had actually been huge modifications to the method kids were informed in the nation, which has actually been applauded for its reaction to the pandemic after it entered into lockdown early, shutting schools and companies.
“Students of all school types are back in school, but not every day,” Günther Schuster, a representative for the Ministry of Education in the state of Bavaria, stated. He included that at a normal secondary school class, half of the trainees went to in the early morning and the other half in the afternoon.
“Face-to-face instruction only takes place in small groups,” he stated, describing that trainee groups are not blended and social distancing procedures remain in location in class.
Nearly 200,000 coronavirus cases have actually been validated in Germany up until now, with more than 9,000 deaths. According to an NBC News’ tally, there are now more than 3 million validated coronavirus cases in the United States and 133,170 deaths.
Full protection of the coronavirus break out
While not straight opposing Trump’s remarks, Heinz-Peter Meidinger, the head of the German Teachers’ Association, stated the scenario for schools because nation had lots of unpredictability and numerous associates fidgeted about going back to complete capability.
“We have different infection patterns in the different German states,” he stated. “No one truly understands how the infections [across Germany] will establish after the summertime school vacations.”
Sweden embraced a various method than that of Germany and much of the rest of Europe, and kept most schools and companies open throughout the pandemic, a policy which has actually been questioned by some specialists as the death toll there reached 5,500 Thursday.
Nevertheless,one teacher there asked why Trump had actually described the nation.
“It’s not that there were no problems with children going back, because they never really went away,” an assistant principal at a school in Stockholm stated, describing Trump’s tweet.
He wished to remain confidential since he was not formally licensed to comment, however included that comparing the U.S. with a country the size of Sweden “wasn’t sensible.”
His remarks were echoed by Jesper Hansen, 47, a daddy of 3 kids who stated his nation, Denmark, “was much smaller.”
Denmark shut all schools and universities in March, however classes resumed for more youthful kids the list below month, once again with stringent policies in location about class sizes and social distancing.
Hansen stated instructors had actually done a terrific task adjusting the class and he applauded the federal government’s handling of the pandemic.
Larsen, the daddy in Copenhagen, concurred. He stated that Denmark had actually paid a cost in regards to its economy early, however was now profiting of an early lockdown.
In the U.S., the choices about lockdowns were delegated specific states and some enforced more stringent procedures than others.
“There have been a lot of challenges, of course,” he stated, including that there had actually been times throughout the lockdown in which his children Anna, 16, Eva, 13, and Helga, 6, had actually fought with online knowing and missed their buddies.
Dorte Lange, vice president of the Danish instructors union, stated it was critical for federal governments to include teachers in decision-making throughout the pandemic.
“If you don’t take teachers’ worries seriously, you won’t be able to build that trust that makes reopening possible,” she stated. “It is very important that teachers feel safe, so parents feel safe.”
Steffen Handal, a main school instructor and president of the biggest education union in Norway, concurred.
The nation entered into lockdown early. Schools and kindergartens were closed down March 12. The nation then resumed them in stages in mid-April and May.
Download the NBC News app for breaking news and politics
Handal stated “infection control measures were quite difficult” at the start, including that it had actually been a battle to get enough instructors and class to accommodate social distancing policies and smaller sized class sizes.
Although he would not resolve Trump’s remarks straight, he stated that there were lessons to be found out.
Collaboration amongst all stakeholders, consisting of instructors, schools, unions, regional towns, health authorities and the federal government was “absolutely fundamental,” he stated.
“We decided in our union very early on, not to pretend to be experts on COVID-19. We decided we would leave the discussion on what type of measures should be introduced to the real experts,” Handal included. “It is very important that everybody does what they are good at.”
Henry Austin and Yuliya Talmazan reported from London. Andy Eckardt and Carlo Angerer reported from Mainz, Germany.