School reopening debate firestorm

The president disagreed with CDC guidance calling for safety measures including masks and 6-feet spacing between desks.
2:47 | 07/08/20

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Transcript for School reopening debate firestorm
Of course, the heated debate whether to open schools across this country in the fall, some as early as August. Tonight, we take you inside the school board meetings, students and teachers concerned. And the E.R. Doctor, a father, says even he doesn't know whether to send his child back. And the new decision near new York City. Here's Stephanie Ramos. Reporter: Tonight, with the virus raging and hospitals on the brink, the president putting pressure on schools. Today, threatening to cut off funding for districts that don't reopen in person. We're very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools. Reporter: President trump tweeting he disagrees with the CDC "On their very tough and expensive guidelines for opening schools." The president said today we just don't want the guidance to be too tough. Reporter: Those CDC guidelines call for safety measures like masks, six feet of spacing between desks, open windows, avoiding the cafeteria and playground equipment, if possible. But tonight, mixed messages from the white house coronavirus task force. I want to make it very clear that what is not the intent of CDC's guidelines is to be used it as a rationale to keep schools closed. Reporter: The director of the CDC appearing to back off those guidelines. New guidelines now expected to roll out next week. But it comes amid those new warnings about the risk of indoor gatherings in states where cases are surging. Like Florida, where there is heated debate after the schools ordered schools to reopen in August. I don't think it's responsible to go back to school. Reporter: At a Tampa school board meeting, students, teachers and parents, like this E.R. Doctor, are worried. I think it's going to be really hard to make a decision. As a physician treating covid patients, who's comfortable in that space, I'm not sure how other parents can. Reporter: New Jersey teacher Adam Roth wants back in the classroom, if it's safe. We can have that much greater of an impact on our student population if we are with them, but just in a safe environment. Reporter: Today, the country's largest public school system -- New York City -- unveiling its plan to reopen with a mix of online learning with two to three days in the classroom, leaving it up to parents. The governor blasting the president, arguing he has no authority over the decision to reopen schools. He then says, "Don't listen to the CDC. I disagree with them." Oh, really? Do you know, Mr. President, better than your health experts how to protect the health of students? Reporter: The president hasn't spelled out how he would cut off funding. He would need congress to cut off the little he controls. Most schools are funded by the state and local levels. But the vice president has suggested the white house could tie the reopening of schools to coronavirus funding down the line. David? All right, Stephanie Ramos, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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