Doctors weigh in on safety of Texas students returning to campus

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Parents across the state are facing tough choices for the fall semester, and medical experts said there's no one-size-fits-all solution.

The Texas Education Agency released new plans this week. They allow families to decide if their children should go back to campus in person, or continue with the online learning plans that started in the spring.

Physicians like Dr. Abdulla Kudrath with Angleton Emergency Room said it's true that most kids don't get severe symptoms when they have COVID-19, but they are great at spreading the virus.

"It's almost like you're rolling the dice," he said. "Talk to them about the virus. Tell them, 'Hey, we don't want you to get sick and bring it home to the family. It could be dangerous for grandpa.'"

The TEA guidelines include plans to provide masks and other safeguards for students and school employees. Those protections, though, are far from sure things.

SEE RELATED STORY: Parents will have more back-to-school choices, TEA says

Dr. David Persse with the Houston Health Department agreed, but also points out, children need social interaction and parents don't always have time to home school.

"Kids need to be in school. It's important for their psychological and emotional health and development," Persse said.

Dorothea Walker is a mom and a teacher. She's worried about vulnerable students and school staff who may also be at risk.

"I'm concerned, because I have asthma so imagine the students who have ailments like that," she said.

Dr. Kudrath tells his patients they have to look at the big picture and do what's right for their individual families.

"It's not a one-size-fits all. So, I listen to their particular story. If their kids have health problems and if online learning is an option, I suggest they go with that," he said.

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