Texas Governor Abbott Weighs In On Local Authority To Open Or Close Schools

Aug 5, 2020

Governor Greg Abbott speaking while visiting an Emergency Management warehouse in San Antonio, Texas on Tuesday, Aug. 4,2020.
Credit Courtesy: Texas Public Radio

LOCAL AUTHORITY - Texas State health officials say over  9,100  new  Covid-19 cases have been reported  along with 245 new deaths. This brings Texas’ total Covid cases to over 451,000 and more than 7,200 deaths.  Schools reopening during the  Coronavirus  pandemic has created controversy as there has been some confusion as to who has legal authority to say when schools can reopen.  Speaking at a Texas Division of Emergency Management Warehouse in San Antonio yesterday Republican Gov. Greg Abbott said who has the final say. 

“It really is the responsibility and the necessity of the locally-elected  school boards that are responsive to the teachers, to the parents, to the students, to the public to make the decision that is the best for their school," Abbott said. 

Abbott’s  explanation backs the legal opinion issued by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton last week. It prohibits local health authorities from issuing blanket school closures for all schools in their jurisdiction before the academic year.                   

Abbott said in preparation for the new school year, the state has already distributed Personal Protective Equipment to schools across the state. That includes 59 million masks, 24-thousand thermometers and hundreds of thousands of face shields.