Politics

New York To Work With Bill Gates To ‘Reimagine’ Education Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

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Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that the state is partnering with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to “reimagine” education as schools shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“As we prepare to reopen we have the opportunity to reimagine and build back our education system better,” Cuomo said on Twitter. “We will work with the  @gatesfoundation and develop a blueprint to do this.”

The coronavirus pandemic has forced much of American life to shut down indefinitely, and 46 states have either ordered or recommended that schools close for the rest of the academic year. (RELATED: FLASHBACK: Jan. 21: Fauci Says Coronavirus ‘Not A Major Threat’ To U.S.)

Gates’ advocacy has been a significant part of the U.S. response to the pandemic. The Gates Foundation is the primary funder of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), which produced the model used by the Trump Administration to form its coronavirus response.

The Microsoft co-founder has also pledged to spend billions of dollars to help develop a coronavirus vaccine, saying last month that he is prepared to “waste” part of his fortune on vaccine trials that don’t ultimately produce successful results. (RELATED: Trump Says White House Coronavirus Model Overestimated Number Of Hospital Beds Needed)

Gates has faced criticism for his role in the country’s coronavirus response, and his advocacy for extended lockdown measures as the nation’s death toll continues to climb. Gates has been targeted by anti-lockdown protesters, with some protesters in California last week even calling for the billionaire to be arrested.