Can We Re-Open Schools?

This year has introduced many parents to involuntary home schooling. Some may wish to continue the independent guided learning and others are looking forward to a return to public education - but when? Consider steps when new cases are low (<5%) or leveled out.

 

We all want to keep our children safe and healthy, at the same time, they need an education, one on one time with teachers, playtime and connection with peers. The CDC has developed guidelines to keep our children as safe as possible. There are many unanswered questions regarding the epidemic and until things sort out, the CDC has outlined ways to safely re-open schools. Why not make the adjustments so our children can learn? The good news is, more and more, there are findings that indicate there is no asymptomatic spread and that immunity is long-term. They have also shown that there is no transmission from healthy children (with healthy being the key word) [https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7268273/   and https://alachuachronicle.com/behind-the-mask-and-the-shower-curtain-covid-19-and-the-plight-of-children/ ] Here are some of their guidelines for a return to the classroom:

CDC: Promote healthy behaviors - Teach kids to take care of their health with good hygiene, rest and proper nutrition (i.e. no junk food). Don’t share materials, utensils, drinking cups or straws or personal items. Throw out tissues and wash your hands. Desks can be spaced out a bit (2 arm lengths).

CDC: Maintain a healthy environment – This includes having good ventilation in the schools, circulating outdoor air, maintaining clean bathrooms, wiping off surfaces and having soap, water, paper towels and cleaning supplies on hand. We might need to temporarily hire more facilities personnel and teachers, but our children are worth it.

CDC: Lunch/meals – staggering meal times or deliver box lunches to classrooms

CDC: Keep sick people home. This really should be a policy at work or school, even without this pandemic. You would not believe how many times over the years I have told people with the flu to stay home and they responded “But work will get mad” My response was “So they want everyone to get sick?” Best to stay home, rest and recover so you can get better faster and not put yourself at risk of secondary infections or worse.

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KATHLEEN "DOC" KELLEY