NIH Director Collins: Without Masks in Schools ‘Kids Will Have to Go Back to Remote Learning’

National Institutes of Health director Dr. Francis Collins said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” that if children and educators did not wear masks in school, children would “have to go back to remote learning.”

Anchor George Stephanopoulos asked, “With the school year starting for so many kids and their parents right now, what’s your best advice to parents as they send their kids back to school?”

Collins said, “I would ask that they would think about masks in the way they ought to be thought about. This is not a political statement or invasion of your liberties. This is a life-saving medical device. Asking kids to wear a mask is uncomfortable, but kids are pretty resilient. We know kids under 12 are likely to get infected. If we don’t have masks in schools, this virus will spread more widely. It will probably result in outbreaks in schools, and kids will have to go back to remote learning, which is the one thing we want to prevent. This virtual learning that kids had to go through is really bad for their development. We ought to be making every effort to make sure they can be back in the classroom. The best way to do that is to be sure masks are worn by the students, by the staff, by everybody. It’s a small price to pay to keep kids where they need to be.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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