The public says, 50% to 32%, that the risks of reopening schools outweigh the consequences of keeping schools closed. Just 19% believe that schools should completely reopen, with 26% favoring partial reopenings and 42% saying that schools should remain online-only or closed. Among those who favor partial or total reopening, there’s majority support for several preventative measures, including daily temperature checks, smaller class sizes and requiring teachers and staff to wear masks.
Attitudes are similarly cautious among one of the groups most directly affected by the debate ― the parents and guardians living with children in grades K-12 who would normally be heading back to schools later this year. Only about one-third of these parents say that, if it were up to them, they’d want their kids to attend any in-person classes for fall sessions. Another 54% say they’d rather their kids stay home.