Senate Commerce Committee chairman Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The Senate Commerce Committee said Tuesday it's investigating multiple whistleblower complaints accusing the Federal Aviation Administration of improperly training its aviation safety inspectors, including some who reviewed the now-grounded Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets involved in two recent crashes.

Details: Committee chairman Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) said in a letter to acting FAA administrator Daniel Elwell that information obtained from the whistleblowers suggested that the FAA may have been notified about training and certification concerns as early as August 2018 — before the Lion Air crash in October. He also noted that he's concerned about those who have been improperly trained and certified and may have participated in evaluations of Boeing 737 MAX flight control systems suspected of causing both crashes.

  • Boeing 737 MAX’s Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), an automated flight-control system, has come under scrutiny in the wake of the fatal crashes. Investigators believed it was erroneously activated during the Lion Air flight in Indonesia, and the system may have played a role in last month's crash.
  • The FAA, which is responsible for certifying new planes, has faced backlash for not grounding the Boeing 737 MAX jets faster, as well as for delegating certification activities to Boeing.
  • Wicker did not say whether the whistleblowers worked for the FAA, another agency or Boeing.

Go deeper: Everything you need to know about the Boeing 737 MAX crashes

Go deeper

Los Angeles and San Diego public schools will be online only this fall

Alhambra Unified School District. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Public schools in Los Angeles and San Diego, the two largest public school districts in California, will not be sending children back to campuses in the fall and will instead administer online classes only due to concerns over the ongoing threat of the coronavirus.

Why it matters: The two districts, which together enroll about 825,000 students, are the largest in the country thus far to announce that they will not return to in-person learning in the fall, even as the Trump administration aggressively pushes for schools to do so.

This story is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

Updated 20 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 12,984,811 — Total deaths: 570,375 — Total recoveries — 7,154,492Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 3,327,388— Total deaths: 135,379 — Total recoveries: 1,006,326 — Total tested: 40,282,176Map.
  3. World: WHO head: There will be no return to the "old normal" for the foreseeable future — Hong Kong Disneyland closing due to surge.
  4. States: Cuomo says New York will use formula to determine if reopening schools is safe.
  5. Politics: Mick Mulvaney: "We still have a testing problem in this country."

Cuomo: New York will use formula to determine if it's safe to reopen schools

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that schools will only reopen if they meet scientific criteria that show the coronavirus is under control in their region, including a daily infection rate of below 5% over a 14-day average. "We're not going to use our children as guinea pigs," he added.

The big picture: Cuomo's insistence that New York will rely on data to decide whether to reopen schools comes as President Trump and his administration continue an aggressive push to get kids back in the classroom as part of their efforts to juice the economy.