Trump is still pressuring schools to reopen, despite nearly 100,000 kids testing positive for COVID-19 in the second half of July, new report says

Octavio Jones/Getty ImagesBusiness education teacher Malikah Armbrister stands in protest along with her colleagues in front of the Hillsborough County Schools District Office on July 16, 2020 in Tampa, Florida.

At least 97,078 tested positive for COVID-19 in the last two weeks of July, a 40% increase from prior weeks, according to a new report.

The report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association was released as many schools across the US are prepping to return to in-person classes in the fall with an endorsement from PresidentDonald Trump.

The organisations gathered data from 49 different states, though each state defined “child” differently. In some states, a child was defined as someone between the age of newborn and 14 years old, while Alabama reported children as anyone from newborn to 24 years old. The report said that New York, Texas, and Alabama were not included in the study, due to a lack of sufficient information.

According to the data provided in the report, 338,982 children have tested positive for COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, and nearly 100,000 of those cases were recorded in the last two weeks of July.

Schools across the nation started in-person classes this month, while others have opted for online courses. The decision behind reopening public schools has largely been left up to individual school districts in many states, though President Donald Trump has urged schools to reopen in the fall.

It remains unclear how opening schools could impact communities. Several schools have already had to temporarily shut down after COVID-19 outbreaks, including one in Georgia, which made headlines after a photo of a crowded high school hallway circulated online.

Research on how children are impacted by COVID-19 is ongoing. Some studies have found that children are at lower risk than adults of contracting the virus, and less likely to transmit the disease to others, while other studies show that children spread the virus more often than adults within households.

According to the AAP data, states with the highest cumulative numbers of pediatric COVID-19 cases as of July 30 were California, Florida, Arizona, Tennessee, Illinois, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

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