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2 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I've written that life won't return to normal until there is a vaccine. I don't think that's the same as extending the quarantine. A long term quarantine isn't realistic or sustainable. Based on what we know today (information keeps changing), it does not appear safe to resume activities that require crowded indoor spaces without herd immunity. I think children can return to school with some modifications to allow for less crowded conditions. Our children must be cared for and educated so it's unreasonable (IMHO) to require disease eradication before resuming school. 

But it's not unreasonable to avoid certain activities without a vaccine or herd immunity. Do we need to attend football games, concerts, plays? Is that as necessary as providing an education to our children? I don't think so. That's why I say life won't return to normal without a vaccine or herd immunity. Even if those events are allowed by the government, enough people will avoid them to have an impact. 

I guess I see it differently. The idea of flattening the curve is built on the notion that people will still be exposed and potentially ill, just in a manner that doesn't overwhelm health care systems to the point of not being able to treat people properly. I do think that testing needs to be more available and consistent, so that there's less mystery about who is asymptomatic and so those who are take proper precautions. Once testing becomes standard, I think people will be more open to attending public gatherings.

I disagree that those types of events aren't necessary for education. I feel like a huge part of education is participation in the human experience, including social and cultural events. Beyond that, there are so many large group experiences that bring book learning to life, that turn facts into knowledge. Events like mock trials, robotics competitions, 4-H/FFA shows, hands-on/lab classes, etc. I can't imagine how to modify or eliminate every variety of group events like that for as long as it will take to establish a vaccine or herd immunity.

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How do you expect to "figure this out" when the most brilliant, well-educated, and experienced minds on the planet are putting everything they have into figuring this out and they don't have answers? 

Look, you’re freakin out about too many scenarios. You just need to calm the hell down. Said with all loving intentions, of course.  You know which people come out okay when disaster strikes? Tho

Who are you asking to tell you so you can put plans in place?  What do you think anyone can tell you? Everyone here is in a bad position in some way. I have two college juniors stuck at home with me n

18 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I've written that life won't return to normal until there is a vaccine. I don't think that's the same as extending the quarantine. A long term quarantine isn't realistic or sustainable. Based on what we know today (information keeps changing), it does not appear safe to resume activities that require crowded indoor spaces without herd immunity. I think children can return to school with some modifications to allow for less crowded conditions. Our children must be cared for and educated so it's unreasonable (IMHO) to require disease eradication before resuming school. 

But it's not unreasonable to avoid certain activities without a vaccine or herd immunity. Do we need to attend football games, concerts, plays? Is that as necessary as providing an education to our children? I don't think so. That's why I say life won't return to normal without a vaccine or herd immunity. Even if those events are allowed by the government, enough people will avoid them to have an impact. 

Kids who are vulnerable (underlying conditions, asthma, immune disorders etc) are never going to be able to attend school even with "distancing" because they need vaccines. When schools say that they are going to "wipe surfaces frequently", that is a long shot because kids need to go to the bathroom all the time, kids put hands on their faces all the time (mine will not remember even if I explicitly tell him not to), teachers can have underlying conditions, cash starved school districts can not come up with more staff at short notice etc. So, how do we stop infection spread within a school and creating a closer of infections within each school as soon as we start in Fall? This disease is carried by asymptomatic carriers who can shed the virus to their surroundings. In the first week of March, when there was serious community spread in my area, I saw kids in my local PS crowding together on play structures, holding hands, few kids sharing a single laptop with all the kids putting hands on the keyboard etc. This was after there was heightened awareness in the community about the virus and reported deaths in the neighborhood. Reopening schools after flattening the curve sounds reasonable until the first child deaths or teacher deaths due to infection in schools hits the news. Nobody wants to see those things happening.

One idea that I came up with: since the weather will be great, why not hold classes outside in the Fall (wherever possible) for a few months? That could prevent spread from circulating air and buy us more time to come up with a vaccine.

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16 minutes ago, SKL said:

I know this is a summer/fall thread, but some folks are mentioning current school year, and I don't know where else to put this.

My kids' school has [finally] started posting grades for the "quarantine period" work.  (This is our 5th week out of school.)  So far, they are mostly getting 100% for participation (or so it seems).  A few grades came through as 75% (3 out of 4 possible) which may or may not mean incomplete work.

I hope nobody thinks these grades are meaningful.  My kid who got 100% on the online math test probably spent the entire day with the math book at her side just to get through that one (presumably multiple choice) test.  It doesn't mean she's gonna do great in math next year....

Good teachers know how to assess where students are realistically at. This is true even outside of the current circumstances. When I taught in a public school, I knew not all of my students were operating at their grade ability level even when they had made decent grades the previous years. I spent the first few weeks of class doing review and getting a feel for how the students were performing. I can imagine teachers this fall will spend plenty of time on review and assessment, knowing that this last quarter of the school year was not ideal. It would be great if schools could set up tutoring and/or small group learning protocols when school starts back for students who passed/earned participation grades during this time but really didn't learn all that much.

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11 minutes ago, meena said:

I guess I see it differently. The idea of flattening the curve is built on the notion that people will still be exposed and potentially ill, just in a manner that doesn't overwhelm health care systems to the point of not being able to treat people properly. I do think that testing needs to be more available and consistent, so that there's less mystery about who is asymptomatic and so those who are take proper precautions. Once testing becomes standard, I think people will be more open to attending public gatherings.

I disagree that those types of events aren't necessary for education. I feel like a huge part of education is participation in the human experience, including social and cultural events. Beyond that, there are so many large group experiences that bring book learning to life, that turn facts into knowledge. Events like mock trials, robotics competitions, 4-H/FFA shows, hands-on/lab classes, etc. I can't imagine how to modify or eliminate every variety of group events like that for as long as it will take to establish a vaccine or herd immunity.

The rate of hospitalization from this virus scares me.  As long as so many still need to be in the hospital for 2-4 weeks with a risk of long term damage after, we will be keeping social activities to a minimum.  I won't be going to a movie theater, sitting in a restaurant, or anything else like that until it feels safe.  Getting better care while spending 2-4 weeks in the hospital is not going to cut it.  My son loves doing his 4H archery and I'm not sure what we'll do about that.  Its inside a cramped area and distancing would be impossible.  I'm iffy on doing co-op too.  Those are the only 2 things I'm even considering and we don't have anyone high risk in our house.  I do worry about my husband, he has chronic Vitamin D deficiencies and tends to get sick more often that I do.  

We love all of those same group experiences that you mentioned, but we can take time off from them or figuring out to do them differently on a way that doesn't put us at risk.  I'm not saying they shouldn't happen. but I wouldn't feel comfortable participating unless there is a major break through in treatments and testing, and I can't be the only one.  Wide spread testing still won't catch the asymptomatic people, unless we expect people to just randomly get themselves checked, or require it to be done on a regular basis, neither of which I think is going to happen.   

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12 minutes ago, meena said:

I guess I see it differently. The idea of flattening the curve is built on the notion that people will still be exposed and potentially ill, just in a manner that doesn't overwhelm health care systems to the point of not being able to treat people properly. I do think that testing needs to be more available and consistent, so that there's less mystery about who is asymptomatic and so those who are take proper precautions. Once testing becomes standard, I think people will be more open to attending public gatherings.

I disagree that those types of events aren't necessary for education. I feel like a huge part of education is participation in the human experience, including social and cultural events. Beyond that, there are so many large group experiences that bring book learning to life, that turn facts into knowledge. Events like mock trials, robotics competitions, 4-H/FFA shows, hands-on/lab classes, etc. I can't imagine how to modify or eliminate every variety of group events like that for as long as it will take to establish a vaccine or herd immunity.

I don't believe that the events are "unnecessary" but they are not necessary all of the time. And if those events were actually necessary then everyone would be able attend and that's never been the case. 

It's hard to imagine but it's happened many times throughout history. We are ignorant of the need to modify our behavior because of a virus because of vaccines. My mother remembers needing to avoid certain activities as a child due to the polio epidemic. 

And what is the overall goal - to flatten the curve (good for society) or to protect your family and friends (really only matters to you)? If you attend a large crowded gathering and become exposed and then visit an elderly family member, you have just connected your elderly relative to everyone surrounding you at that gathering. That dramatically increases the risk to the elderly relative. I'm not comfortable with that risk so I will avoid crowded events. If enough people are also concerned, it will have an impact. 

I agree that people will be more open to attending these events if there is widespread and frequent testing available. That's not available today. And even if it was available, how do you know that everyone sitting around you at the movie theatre has tested negative? 

6 minutes ago, mathnerd said:

Kids who are vulnerable (underlying conditions, asthma, immune disorders etc) are never going to be able to attend school even with "distancing" because they need vaccines. When schools say that they are going to "wipe surfaces frequently", that is a long shot because kids need to go to the bathroom all the time, kids put hands on their faces all the time (mine will not remember even if I explicitly tell him not to), teachers can have underlying conditions, cash starved school districts can not come up with more staff at short notice etc. So, how do we stop infection spread within a school and creating a closer of infections within each school as soon as we start in Fall? This disease is carried by asymptomatic carriers who can shed the virus to their surroundings. In the first week of March, when there was serious community spread in my area, I saw kids in my local PS crowding together on play structures, holding hands, few kids sharing a single laptop with all the kids putting hands on the keyboard etc. This was after there was heightened awareness in the community about the virus and reported deaths in the neighborhood. Reopening schools after flattening the curve sounds reasonable until the first child deaths or teacher deaths due to infection in schools hits the news. Nobody wants to see those things happening.

One idea that I came up with: since the weather will be great, why not hold classes outside in the Fall (wherever possible) for a few months? That could prevent spread from circulating air and buy us more time to come up with a vaccine.

The weather won't be great everywhere in the fall. It will still be extremely hot when schools begin here at the beginning of August. One local school district begins their year in mid July. The kids are only allowed to go outside in the morning due to the extreme heat. 

There are no good answers to this until there is a vaccine. We have to weigh risk vs return. Kids returning to school is crucial. Too many kids will fall through the cracks without regular school. Many kids only eat regularly at school. The only place they have structure in their lives is school. Our society has no safety net for families and children. The public schools are the one place that provides something. It's certainly not ideal. Maybe if we had a support system for families, then the kids could stay home until it's safe for everyone. But that doesn't exist in the USA. 

As for accepting the first death of a child or teacher - we already accept those things. I can't believe I'm going here but - 20 1st graders were shot to death in their classroom along with their teachers and we didn't make any changes to stop that from happening again. 

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1 minute ago, Cnew02 said:

The rate of hospitalization from this virus scares me.  As long as so many still need to be in the hospital for 2-4 weeks with a risk of long term damage after, we will be keeping social activities to a minimum.  I won't be going to a movie theater, sitting in a restaurant, or anything else like that until it feels safe.  Getting better care while spending 2-4 weeks in the hospital is not going to cut it.  My son loves doing his 4H archery and I'm not sure what we'll do about that.  Its inside a cramped area and distancing would be impossible.  I'm iffy on doing co-op too.  Those are the only 2 things I'm even considering and we don't have anyone high risk in our house.  I do worry about my husband, he has chronic Vitamin D deficiencies and tends to get sick more often that I do.  

We love all of those same group experiences that you mentioned, but we can take time off from them or figuring out to do them differently on a way that doesn't put us at risk.  I'm not saying they shouldn't happen. but I wouldn't feel comfortable participating unless there is a major break through in treatments and testing, and I can't be the only one.  Wide spread testing still won't catch the asymptomatic people, unless we expect people to just randomly get themselves checked, or require it to be done on a regular basis, neither of which I think is going to happen.   

Are most hospitalizations lasting 2-4 weeks? The only person I know locally who has tested positive was not hospitalized and recovered at home; the total time from feeling sick to recovery was about 14 days. From the way his wife described it, he was very ill but not in serious distress to warrant going to the hospital. She's a nurse and he's a doctor, so I trust their judgment and descriptions. I've heard that those in the hospital don't remain there for the entire recovery period. I know that recovery times differ depending on other underlying issues, so I'm wondering about people who don't have risk factors.

If testing becomes widely and easily available, I could see it being required randomly in hot spots/areas of higher risk to catch asymptomatic carriers until vaccines are in place. I think a lot will also depend on if there are spikes of infections when activities start to begin again.

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There are teachers among the fatalities 

https://abc7ny.com/coronavirus-teacher-deaths-nyc-update-corona-virus/6100157/

“NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Twenty-one New York City public school teachers are among the 50 Department of Education employees who have died of coronavirus, DOE said Monday.

"Our thoughts are with their families, loved ones, and school communities during this difficult time. Upon notification of each passing the DOE is providing school communities with the mental health and emotional supports to process these losses. We are also supporting staff in notifying their communities in the most appropriate way possible, while respecting the wishes of families," the DOE wrote in a statement.

As of April 10, 2020, the 50 employees who have passed as reported by their family members and loved ones:

22 are paraprofessionals
21 are teachers
2 are administrators
1 is a facilities staffer
1 is a guidance counselor
1 is a food service staffer
2 central office employees
1 employee listed above was also staffing a REC”

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38 minutes ago, meena said:

Are most hospitalizations lasting 2-4 weeks? The only person I know locally who has tested positive was not hospitalized and recovered at home; the total time from feeling sick to recovery was about 14 days. From the way his wife described it, he was very ill but not in serious distress to warrant going to the hospital. She's a nurse and he's a doctor, so I trust their judgment and descriptions. I've heard that those in the hospital don't remain there for the entire recovery period. I know that recovery times differ depending on other underlying issues, so I'm wondering about people who don't have risk factors.

If testing becomes widely and easily available, I could see it being required randomly in hot spots/areas of higher risk to catch asymptomatic carriers until vaccines are in place. I think a lot will also depend on if there are spikes of infections when activities start to begin again.

I haven’t seen new reporting saying it’s been shortened.  All of the reporting I have seen about hospitalization is that it’s needed I. somewhere between 10-20% of those who get it and that it’s a long disease.   
 

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/clinical-guidance-management-patients.html

 

Among patients who developed severe disease, the medium time to dyspnea ranged from 5 to 8 days, the median time to acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) ranged from 8 to 12 days, and the median time to ICU admission ranged from 10 to 12 days.

 

 

Pardon the typos, typing on a phone is a pain.  

Edited by Cnew02
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30 minutes ago, meena said:

Are most hospitalizations lasting 2-4 weeks? The only person I know locally who has tested positive was not hospitalized and recovered at home; the total time from feeling sick to recovery was about 14 days. From the way his wife described it, he was very ill but not in serious distress to warrant going to the hospital. She's a nurse and he's a doctor, so I trust their judgment and descriptions. I've heard that those in the hospital don't remain there for the entire recovery period. I know that recovery times differ depending on other underlying issues, so I'm wondering about people who don't have risk factors.

If testing becomes widely and easily available, I could see it being required randomly in hot spots/areas of higher risk to catch asymptomatic carriers until vaccines are in place. I think a lot will also depend on if there are spikes of infections when activities start to begin again.

 

My uncle a ~65 YO white male has been in the hospital on/off a vent for the last two and a half weeks. Doctors are hopeful he will come off the vent in the next week. He was sick for 4-5 days before my aunt insisted that he go to the hospital. Those people who need to be hospitalized are typically there for quite some time.

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1 hour ago, meena said:

I guess I see it differently. The idea of flattening the curve is built on the notion that people will still be exposed and potentially ill, just in a manner that doesn't overwhelm health care systems to the point of not being able to treat people properly. I do think that testing needs to be more available and consistent, so that there's less mystery about who is asymptomatic and so those who are take proper precautions. Once testing becomes standard, I think people will be more open to attending public gatherings.

I disagree that those types of events aren't necessary for education. I feel like a huge part of education is participation in the human experience, including social and cultural events. Beyond that, there are so many large group experiences that bring book learning to life, that turn facts into knowledge. Events like mock trials, robotics competitions, 4-H/FFA shows, hands-on/lab classes, etc. I can't imagine how to modify or eliminate every variety of group events like that for as long as it will take to establish a vaccine or herd immunity.

 

We are an opera/ballet/theater-going, gymnastics and cheer-competition attending, track and field loving family. We see these as 100% necessary for education purposes. We're also willing to delay these activities for however long we need to whether that's this fall or next spring.  My kids have had LOTS of experiences of this nature and that will continue when its safe to do so.

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8 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I don't believe that the events are "unnecessary" but they are not necessary all of the time. And if those events were actually necessary then everyone would be able attend and that's never been the case. 

It's hard to imagine but it's happened many times throughout history. We are ignorant of the need to modify our behavior because of a virus because of vaccines. My mother remembers needing to avoid certain activities as a child due to the polio epidemic. 

And what is the overall goal - to flatten the curve (good for society) or to protect your family and friends (really only matters to you)? If you attend a large crowded gathering and become exposed and then visit an elderly family member, you have just connected your elderly relative to everyone surrounding you at that gathering. That dramatically increases the risk to the elderly relative. I'm not comfortable with that risk so I will avoid crowded events. If enough people are also concerned, it will have an impact. 

I agree that people will be more open to attending these events if there is widespread and frequent testing available. That's not available today. And even if it was available, how do you know that everyone sitting around you at the movie theatre has tested negative? 

The polio virus was isolated in 1908 and the first large-scale vaccine trial was in 1954. People didn't avoid large gatherings for that entirety of time. Were there other types of community behavior modifications going on? My relatives have never shared anything about needing to do anything like that, so I don't really know much about those times. Polio is similar to Covid, in that it produces no or few symptoms in many of those infected, so there were asymptomatic carriers. Those who did show symptoms were quarantined. I'm curious to know how/what type of precautions communities took during those times.

As far as not knowing if people around have tested negative or not, well, you don't. But if testing is more available, more people will be tested more frequently. I've talked to and read about many people who have had a little cough or throat tickle and would have gladly been tested if they could just for the reassurance. If that starts occurring, people are going to know sooner and with more certainty and will be able to adjust their social behaviors right away. Quite a bit of community spread has been from people continuing to do their regular activities despite not feeling well because they didn't realize what they were walking around with. The doctor I mentioned above became ill because of a co-worker who attended a meeting despite not feeling well (this was early on, right before social distancing became a thing and it's allergy season so was easy to explain away symptoms on something else). I think people will have a better understanding now, that if they do get a positive, they need to stay home and recover. Not everyone will do that (my MIL is like that), but many will because we are being taught during this time to take having this sickness seriously. I do think that people who are in contact with someone at higher risk may need to more carefully consider their activities.

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3 hours ago, meena said:

I've thought the same as you regarding this quarantine period. But then I see people talking about not resuming activities until a vaccine is in place, which seems to be a very different benchmark. If we are operating in ways to flatten the curve (versus trying to eliminate chance of infection), I feel like schools should be able to resume in the fall but having rolling starts and modified schedules to reduce total number of students in a building at one time. I also think high schools, and possibly middle schools, should adopt a hybrid model, where students don't need to be on campus full-time. My local high school was already doing this before all of this started to reduce population on campus and prevent over-crowding. 

Everyone I've talked to IRL has been supportive of the quarantine in this area ending in early summer as long as our medical system is doing well. It's only on this message board and in some news articles that I've heard of people thinking that the quarantine will be extended until there is a vaccine and/or a way to ensure zero exposure. That doesn't seem realistic to me to change the intent of social measures from flattening the curve to disease eradication.

 

I haven't seen anyone here advocating zero exposure. I HAVE seen people waiting for adequate testing and contact tracking capacity.

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8 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

 

My uncle a ~65 YO white male has been in the hospital on/off a vent for the last two and a half weeks. Doctors are hopeful he will come off the vent in the next week. He was sick for 4-5 days before my aunt insisted that he go to the hospital. Those people who need to be hospitalized are typically there for quite some time.

I'm sorry to hear this. I hope your uncle is able to come off the vent soon and make a full recovery.

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Just now, Sneezyone said:

 

I haven't seen anyone here advocating zero exposure. I HAVE seen people waiting for adequate testing and contact tracking capacity.

I don’t expect the lock down level of quarantine to extend until there is a vaccine.  I don’t expect any semblance of normal to return until there’s a vaccine.  I figure things will be different, modified to varying degrees, until people feel safe. You can open the the theater, or Disney, but you can’t compel people to go.  

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2 minutes ago, meena said:

. Not everyone will do that (my MIL is like that), but many will because we are being taught during this time to take having this sickness seriously. 

My in-laws too but if people with their attitude test positive in my country of origin, they would get fined and/or jailed, and their photo would be in the news on social media. So widespread availability of testing (now it is still selective) would help for my country of origin. 

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6 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

 

We are an opera/ballet/theater-going, gymnastics and cheer-competition attending, track and field loving family. We see these as 100% necessary for education purposes. We're also willing to delay these activities for however long we need to whether that's this fall or next spring.  My kids have had LOTS of experiences of this nature and that will continue when its safe to do so.

How is "safe" determined? I think that is where there is going to be a lot of disagreement or difficulty in coming up with a definitive standard.

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7 minutes ago, meena said:

How is "safe" determined? I think that is where there is going to be a lot of disagreement or difficulty in coming up with a definitive standard.


It’s determined by each individual/family based on their risk tolerance or need. There’s nothing stopping people right now from socializing in homes. Honestly, I’m very close to staying mum while they Darwin themselves right out of the equation. We all have choices. I’ll continue talking to my family/friends in the hope they’ll make different choices. We are very big on travel but I don’t anticipate a major trip until 2021/22. I am risk averse.

Edited by Sneezyone
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4 minutes ago, Cnew02 said:

I don’t expect the lock down level of quarantine to extend until there is a vaccine.  I don’t expect any semblance of normal to return until there’s a vaccine.  I figure things will be different, modified to varying degrees, until people feel safe. You can open the the theater, or Disney, but you can’t compel people to go.  

This has been a point of discussion in our house. Not if we will go or not, but will people in general. We've specifically talked about WDW. When the parks open back up, who will go? How many people will go?

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1 hour ago, meena said:

Good teachers know how to assess where students are realistically at. This is true even outside of the current circumstances. When I taught in a public school, I knew not all of my students were operating at their grade ability level even when they had made decent grades the previous years. I spent the first few weeks of class doing review and getting a feel for how the students were performing. I can imagine teachers this fall will spend plenty of time on review and assessment, knowing that this last quarter of the school year was not ideal. It would be great if schools could set up tutoring and/or small group learning protocols when school starts back for students who passed/earned participation grades during this time but really didn't learn all that much.

I think review and tutoring is going to be necessary. One local school district is reporting that 75% of students have stopped attending their virtual classes and are not turnining in any assignments.

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1 minute ago, mom2scouts said:

I think review and tutoring is going to be necessary. One local school district is reporting that 75% of students have stopped attending their virtual classes and are not turnining in any assignments.

 

Yep. Even in our 'good' district, I am only asking DD to continue with geometry. DS will be transitioning to Derek Owens and mom-selected enrichment classes after 'spring break'.

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43 minutes ago, meena said:

The polio virus was isolated in 1908 and the first large-scale vaccine trial was in 1954. People didn't avoid large gatherings for that entirety of time. Were there other types of community behavior modifications going on? My relatives have never shared anything about needing to do anything like that, so I don't really know much about those times. Polio is similar to Covid, in that it produces no or few symptoms in many of those infected, so there were asymptomatic carriers. Those who did show symptoms were quarantined. I'm curious to know how/what type of precautions communities took during those times.

As far as not knowing if people around have tested negative or not, well, you don't. But if testing is more available, more people will be tested more frequently. I've talked to and read about many people who have had a little cough or throat tickle and would have gladly been tested if they could just for the reassurance. If that starts occurring, people are going to know sooner and with more certainty and will be able to adjust their social behaviors right away. Quite a bit of community spread has been from people continuing to do their regular activities despite not feeling well because they didn't realize what they were walking around with. The doctor I mentioned above became ill because of a co-worker who attended a meeting despite not feeling well (this was early on, right before social distancing became a thing and it's allergy season so was easy to explain away symptoms on something else). I think people will have a better understanding now, that if they do get a positive, they need to stay home and recover. Not everyone will do that (my MIL is like that), but many will because we are being taught during this time to take having this sickness seriously. I do think that people who are in contact with someone at higher risk may need to more carefully consider their activities.

Polio was a cyclical disease. My MIL and I were talking when they started quarantining for coronavirus. She says that summer was "polio season" when she was growing up (she was born in 1939), and they would close down the swimming pools in Kansas City. 

I did some googling on polio: 

Springfield, IL article on the quarantine for children issued in 1949. https://www.sj-r.com/news/20200322/springfield-history-childrens-quarantine-to-halt-polio

San Antonio TX shut schools for the term in 1946. Note this has a paywall but the first paragraph and picture of the local newspaper covers the topic. https://www.expressnews.com/news/local/history-culture/article/May-13-1946-Polio-scare-shuts-down-schools-11139328.php

New Hampshire Public Radio transcript tells of movie theaters using social distancing and swimming pools shut down. https://www.nhpr.org/post/wiping-out-polio-how-us-snuffed-out-killer#stream/0

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9 hours ago, BlsdMama said:

Once a large group has been exposed and healthcare workers have been exposed and recovered, I see no reason to continue the quarantine. Thoughts?

 

I'm interested in whether people recovering from this illness are going to be struck with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or anything like that, as can happen after a nasty virus. I wouldn't have even thought about it except I have a couple of online friends who are part of those communities.

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34 minutes ago, beckyjo said:

Polio was a cyclical disease. My MIL and I were talking when they started quarantining for coronavirus. She says that summer was "polio season" when she was growing up (she was born in 1939), and they would close down the swimming pools in Kansas City. 

I did some googling on polio: 

Springfield, IL article on the quarantine for children issued in 1949. https://www.sj-r.com/news/20200322/springfield-history-childrens-quarantine-to-halt-polio

San Antonio TX shut schools for the term in 1946. Note this has a paywall but the first paragraph and picture of the local newspaper covers the topic. https://www.expressnews.com/news/local/history-culture/article/May-13-1946-Polio-scare-shuts-down-schools-11139328.php

New Hampshire Public Radio transcript tells of movie theaters using social distancing and swimming pools shut down. https://www.nhpr.org/post/wiping-out-polio-how-us-snuffed-out-killer#stream/0

Thank you for those links. I think understanding how communities dealt with this in the past will be helpful in trying to formulate plans for our future. That is an interesting point about the cyclical nature of polio. Right now we are too close to see whether there are cyclical patterns, and if so what they are. It's too early to tell if there is a "season" for this virus. If there is a pattern established, I could see adjusting school calendars for it. We're used to our school calendars following the traditional summers off pattern in the US, but that could be something we need to adjust.

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1 hour ago, meena said:

The polio virus was isolated in 1908 and the first large-scale vaccine trial was in 1954. People didn't avoid large gatherings for that entirety of time. Were there other types of community behavior modifications going on? My relatives have never shared anything about needing to do anything like that, so I don't really know much about those times. Polio is similar to Covid, in that it produces no or few symptoms in many of those infected, so there were asymptomatic carriers. Those who did show symptoms were quarantined. I'm curious to know how/what type of precautions communities took during those times.

 

People of means got out of the cities and headed for the country, where there was lower population density and less chance of contracting polio.  When there was an outbreak of polio in a community, theaters, pools, churches, etc were closed. Outbreaks tended to happen in summer, so if you could afford to head for the countryside, you did. 

Basically, people practiced social distancing.  If you do some googling, you'll find info about how people handled polio in the 1950s before a vaccine came around. It wasn't "business as usual".  People were very afraid and it was an enormous relief when a vaccine was available. 

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52 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

Delaying personal exposure if possible, with the caveat that it's not possible for everyone, sadly often those most at risk, seems like a wise choice to me; the longer you delay a possibly severe illness, the more time there is for potentially helpful therapeutics to be available, understanding of the disease is improved etc. 

I think it would be very helpful for those who cannot delay their own exposure if people who, down the track, choose to engage in everyday life and 'normal' activities, understand that normal should be a new normal, and that while risk tolerance may vary between individuals, things like keeping your distance from others around you, masking when unwell, staying home from non-essential activities when sick etc need to be carried out and not complained about.

Yes, it make take longer to get a reservation at your favourite place, because they've got half as many tables in the same space - oh well, that's OK. New normal. You can't take you kid to co-op because he had a scratchy throat yesterday? Ok. New normal. Things will be different, even when 'open'. And that's how it should be, frankly.

I keep hearing people talking about how this pandemic shows the importance of staying home if you are sick. But all of the incentives work against that. Many workers have PTO and every sick day is a lost vacation day. Many employers have attendance policies that penalize workers for taking too many unscheduled PTO days. Many other workers have no paid time off at all. 

Most schools have attendance policies and kids who miss too many days can be disciplined or held back. 

I think I've read somewhere that vaccines are what makes it possible for mothers to work outside of the home. That might be a stretch. 

I'm watching the Pride and Prejudice mini-series from the 1990's with DD. She couldn't believe that Jane would spend days in bed for a cold. 

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12 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I keep hearing people talking about how this pandemic shows the importance of staying home if you are sick. But all of the incentives work against that. Many workers have PTO and every sick day is a lost vacation day. Many employers have attendance policies that penalize workers for taking too many unscheduled PTO days. Many other workers have no paid time off at all. 

Most schools have attendance policies and kids who miss too many days can be disciplined or held back. 

I think I've read somewhere that vaccines are what makes it possible for mothers to work outside of the home. That might be a stretch. 

I'm watching the Pride and Prejudice mini-series from the 1990's with DD. She couldn't believe that Jane would spend days in bed for a cold. 

I remember when my dad's company (that he sold in 2005) went from sick days to PTO. The issue was that most people were getting "sick" on Mondays after big football games or Fridays/Tuesdays around three-day weekends. He would get so mad at people because he knew they were using sick days for personal days. So he changed the company policy to "flex" days so that people could do that without having to lie. 

So, as much as it makes sense to separate out sick / PTO days, I understand why companies would do otherwise.

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20 minutes ago, EmilyGF said:

I remember when my dad's company (that he sold in 2005) went from sick days to PTO. The issue was that most people were getting "sick" on Mondays after big football games or Fridays/Tuesdays around three-day weekends. He would get so mad at people because he knew they were using sick days for personal days. So he changed the company policy to "flex" days so that people could do that without having to lie. 

So, as much as it makes sense to separate out sick / PTO days, I understand why companies would do otherwise.

I get it. 

There's also a culture in the American workplace that you should work unless you are deathly ill. I've worked many days with colds or a "scratchy throat" as mentioned above. And if I can go to work when I have a cold why can't my kid go to school? That's the mentality that we all have. I've taken a sick day and come back to the office the next day because I didn't want to have more than one sick day. 

 

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I had to send my 8th grader to school this year when she was sick, because once a child has missed 10 days (and doctor visits only excuse THAT day....no matter what, if she's sick for a week, the doctor visit only excuses her for the Wednesday that she was seen in the office), the family is referred to CPS.  And if I have a CPS investigation opened, I lose my teaching license, even if it's unfounded.  She wasn't super sick, but she just had crud that lasted about ten days after having missed a couple days earlier in the year.  She has asthma, and respiratory viruses just linger longer than they do for most kids.  

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Re: Attendance policies at schools

These are mostly determined by the state. In Texas, makeup hours are required after missing 10% of classes, even with confirmed illness. For instance, one of my students had surgery and a long recovery in the hospital. The state still said that after 10% of classes were missed for that semester, the student had to do makeup hours for the hours that were missed.

Re: staggered start times

Staggering start times would be a nightmare logistically. You would need twice as many teachers to manage this and schools don't have budget for that or enough teachers availale for it. You would still need to cut all class sizes in half in order to manage social distancing. The only way I can see this working is if we split the kids in half and do alternate days. Your kid is either M/Th or Tu/F or some other pair of days. I can see elementary going to half-days while middle school and high school go to alternating days.

Bear in mind that the average age of teachers is not low. 30% of teachers in Texas are 50+. 18% are 55+. We are going to be in a confined space with a lot of kids who may be asymptomatic. Teachers will definitely be hit hard if we don't put policies in place to protect them.

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1 hour ago, Terabith said:

I had to send my 8th grader to school this year when she was sick, because once a child has missed 10 days (and doctor visits only excuse THAT day....no matter what, if she's sick for a week, the doctor visit only excuses her for the Wednesday that she was seen in the office), the family is referred to CPS.  And if I have a CPS investigation opened, I lose my teaching license, even if it's unfounded.  She wasn't super sick, but she just had crud that lasted about ten days after having missed a couple days earlier in the year.  She has asthma, and respiratory viruses just linger longer than they do for most kids.  

 

My kid also has asthma and blew through school sick days, a lot of it was just that lingering crud, picked up from viruses from other kids who came in sick.  We have gone over the 10 day mark almost every year, so have to get a doctor note for every single absence. Even when the school nurse sent my kid home, calling me to come pick up, the school did not excuse that absence.  

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1 hour ago, StellaM said:

 

I had a lot of respiratory illnesses as a kid, and always had as much time off as needed to get better; never did my academics any harm.

That was why my parents sent me to a mission school (Roman Catholic) for kindergarten and primary school. Don’t need a doctor’s note or medical certificate to be excused. Just honor code.

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31 minutes ago, slackermom said:

. Even when the school nurse sent my kid home, calling me to come pick up, the school did not excuse that absence.  

My DS15 puked twice in K-8 public school and I was called to pick him up. The school marked him as present for those days. After all he has to be present at school to be sent home. 

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19 minutes ago, Arcadia said:

That was why my parents sent me to a mission school (Roman Catholic) for kindergarten and primary school. Don’t need a doctor’s note or medical certificate to be excused. Just honor code.

DD used to attend Catholic school. I needed a note from the orthodontist when I had to take her out of school for an hour for her appointment. Absences of more than 3 days in a row required a doctor's note. It really made me mad. I'm the mom and I said my kid is going to the orthodontist. Why isn't that good enough? 

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39 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

DD used to attend Catholic school. I needed a note from the orthodontist when I had to take her out of school for an hour for her appointment. Absences of more than 3 days in a row required a doctor's note. It really made me mad. I'm the mom and I said my kid is going to the orthodontist. Why isn't that good enough? 

My sophomore year of high school I would schedule my orthodontist appointments so I would only miss school during the class period before lunch and then miss lunch, so I wouldn't miss too much in-class time. I was pretty serious about school and keeping my grades up, so I thought this was a good solution. Nope. I got in-school suspension without warning for missing that one class too many times. I was a straight-A student and had parental approval and orthodontist notes every time I came back to school, but that didn't matter to the admin one bit.

ETA: I lived in a rural town with no local orthodontist. The drive there and back took an hour, and then the appointment usually took another ~30 minutes. So there's no way I could just be absent over only the lunch period. I was told I should miss different classes, even though I would be absent from more classes (would have had to miss at least two). I would also potentially miss more substantial material in those classes since the one I chose to miss for my appointment time was a blow-off type class needed for graduation and all my other classes were college prep classes where an absence was harder to make up.

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I was thinking about attendance policies on my walk today.  I have sent my kids to school mildly ill, because the make-up work policies are so strict that it's harder on the kid to stay home day 1 and then be up until midnight catching up on days 2-3.  Then last year our state changed the attendance policies so if my kid is home for 10 days due to legitimate illness or injury, it's a truancy issue.  10 days out of 180 are not difficult to hit - a few minor illnesses and sports injuries will get you there.  So when the kid is a little warm and whiny but functional, you send her, because you don't know that she won't be really sick later in the year.

So it seems to me that under the current circumstances, we need to relax those policies a lot. 

Of course, that doesn't address the asymptomatic carrier issue.  But at least if you know the kid is coughing / sneezing, you can keep that at home.

It seems the same can be said about teachers and other workers.

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5 hours ago, SKL said:

  So when the kid is a little warm and whiny but functional, you send her, because you don't know that she won't be really sick later in the year.

So it seems to me that under the current circumstances, we need to relax those policies a lot. 

 

(the following sounds like I'm yelling at you, SKL, but I'm not. Your post was just a jumping off point - I'm agreeing with you)

It seems under ANY circumstances, we should relax those policies. Because although this disease has a higher fatality rate, make no mistake, those ridiculous attendence rules have killed people. Kids come to school with a cold, or even the flu, or RSV thinking it is a cold, and it gets passed around and ends up being taken home by someone with a premature infant or chemo patient or transplant patient at home. And someone who can't afford to get that illness gets it and dies. I am beyond certain that the stupid attendence policies we have in this country have killed babies. 

My son's college classes had a policy that if you missed more than two classes in a semester you failed. Period. Insane!!! And when he was in public school more than 10 days absent in a year required a doctor note for every single one or they could report you to CPS. We've had boardies post on this forum that they had to teach while sick with what they were sure was the flu. 

So much of the past month has been us as a society being forced to look at the serious flaws in our systems. Everything from healthcare tied to employment to the underpaid but essential workers to sick leave and school attendance. 

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Our local public school (that my 10th grade ds enrolled into this school year) has the craziest attendance policy ever. First, the school uses a block system, which means that kids take four courses during the first semester of the year (late August - early January) and then four courses during the second semester (mid-January - end of school). Basically, if you miss more than 3 days of school during the semester, you have to take finals. You also have to take finals if you have a final grade below a C in the course. Of course, kids don’t want to take finals! And these absences can be for anything - doctor’s appointments, sick days, family emergency, it doesn’t matter. So kids at this school go to school sick all. the. time. 

I think this attendance policy is stupid for so many reasons (finals should be all or nothing, “punishing” kids for missing more than three days of school is crazy, etc), and I can’t imagine that school administrators won’t chance this policy due to Covid19. There were several times that ds went to school when he wasn’t feeling the best, but wasn’t SICK....and usually this would drag on for several days. I often thought that if he just stayed home and recuperated, he would likely get better faster and he wouldn’t be spreading his germs to everyone else. 
 

 

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11 minutes ago, Just Kate said:

Our local public school (that my 10th grade ds enrolled into this school year) has the craziest attendance policy ever. First, the school uses a block system, which means that kids take four courses during the first semester of the year (late August - early January) and then four courses during the second semester (mid-January - end of school). Basically, if you miss more than 3 days of school during the semester, you have to take finals. You also have to take finals if you have a final grade below a C in the course. Of course, kids don’t want to take finals! And these absences can be for anything - doctor’s appointments, sick days, family emergency, it doesn’t matter. So kids at this school go to school sick all. the. time. 

I think this attendance policy is stupid for so many reasons (finals should be all or nothing, “punishing” kids for missing more than three days of school is crazy, etc), and I can’t imagine that school administrators won’t chance this policy due to Covid19. There were several times that ds went to school when he wasn’t feeling the best, but wasn’t SICK....and usually this would drag on for several days. I often thought that if he just stayed home and recuperated, he would likely get better faster and he wouldn’t be spreading his germs to everyone else. 
 

 

They don't have a block system here but the attendance policy is even worse. Here the policy is that if you miss any days at all you have to take finals. You can't miss for anything. One of the teachers was telling me how they had a student attend school the day after their mother died because they didn't want to have to take finals. It is absolutely absurd and dangerous. I hope that they are rethinking the idiocy of this during the current climate. I guess it is driven by finances and not good sense.

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1 minute ago, soror said:

They don't have a block system here but the attendance policy is even worse. Here the policy is that if you miss any days at all you have to take finals. You can't miss for anything. One of the teachers was telling me how they had a student attend school the day after their mother died because they didn't want to have to take finals. It is absolutely absurd and dangerous. I hope that they are rethinking the idiocy of this during the current climate. I guess it is driven by finances and not good sense.


Oh my goodness, that IS worse! Awful and irresponsible. And of course, I’m also sure these policies are driven by finances. 

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6 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

(the following sounds like I'm yelling at you, SKL, but I'm not. Your post was just a jumping off point - I'm agreeing with you)

It seems under ANY circumstances, we should relax those policies. Because although this disease has a higher fatality rate, make no mistake, those ridiculous attendence rules have killed people. Kids come to school with a cold, or even the flu, or RSV thinking it is a cold, and it gets passed around and ends up being taken home by someone with a premature infant or chemo patient or transplant patient at home. And someone who can't afford to get that illness gets it and dies. I am beyond certain that the stupid attendence policies we have in this country have killed babies. 

My son's college classes had a policy that if you missed more than two classes in a semester you failed. Period. Insane!!! And when he was in public school more than 10 days absent in a year required a doctor note for every single one or they could report you to CPS. We've had boardies post on this forum that they had to teach while sick with what they were sure was the flu. 

So much of the past month has been us as a society being forced to look at the serious flaws in our systems. Everything from healthcare tied to employment to the underpaid but essential workers to sick leave and school attendance. 

Exactly. I know finances are a big driver behind these policies because school funding is based on attendance. 

But there is also a mentality that everything has to be controlled, proved, documented to be real. Like how DD's friends are now forced to take pictures of their art projects to prove to the teacher that they did the assignment. 

But WTR attendance rules, I know that if schools were less strict that some kids wouldn't attend enough to actually learn anything. Either because they skipped or their parents would make them stay home. My grandmother never went to school after the 8th grade because her uncle, who was her guardian at the time, didn't think it was proper for girls to be educated. He sent her through the 8th grade because that was required at the time (1930's) but not high school. He would also keep her out of the school all of the time to work on the farm. 

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5 hours ago, Just Kate said:

Our local public school (that my 10th grade ds enrolled into this school year) has the craziest attendance policy ever. First, the school uses a block system, which means that kids take four courses during the first semester of the year (late August - early January) and then four courses during the second semester (mid-January - end of school). Basically, if you miss more than 3 days of school during the semester, you have to take finals. You also have to take finals if you have a final grade below a C in the course. Of course, kids don’t want to take finals! And these absences can be for anything - doctor’s appointments, sick days, family emergency, it doesn’t matter. So kids at this school go to school sick all. the. time. 

I think this attendance policy is stupid for so many reasons (finals should be all or nothing, “punishing” kids for missing more than three days of school is crazy, etc), and I can’t imagine that school administrators won’t chance this policy due to Covid19. There were several times that ds went to school when he wasn’t feeling the best, but wasn’t SICK....and usually this would drag on for several days. I often thought that if he just stayed home and recuperated, he would likely get better faster and he wouldn’t be spreading his germs to everyone else. 
 

 


This is the same policy we have. I specifically brought this up at the District’s school safety meeting in late February too. They looked at me like I had three heads. I provided my contact info for a follow up response and have gotten crickets.

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I understand that we need truancy laws, but they need a re-think for sure.  And have for some time.

This probably isn't the thread to solve that particular problem, other than to acknowledge that some relaxing of the current rules has got to be part of a back-to-school policy during this time.

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“Photos of Danish children returning to school while staying six feet apart highlight the country's cautious approach to lifting its lockdown measures”

https://www.businessinsider.com/photos-denmark-children-returning-to-school-amid-coronavirus-lockdown-2020

A picture says a thousand words 🙂 while it would be harder where I am with the high density population. 

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Those Danish kids look so calm and well behaved in the classroom. Even so that six feet apart doesn't seem far enough to me to be effective. As the days go on, I think it would be difficult and stressful to maintain such discipline. My kids went to Belgian primary school and I can tell you that they had to bring their own toilet paper to school and rarely used the bathrooms due to lack of soap or paper towels. Otherwise the school was wonderful and a great experience. I will be watching with great interest if and when Belgium tries to do something similar next month. 

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We need to think about having students attend on alternate days or having 1/2 the class come in the morning and the other 1/2 come in the afternoon. None of this will be easy. We will all be bothered and inconvenienced by this, but is is worth it. 

I was talking to teachers at one of the hybrid schools where I work, and we agreed to lower our class sizes. However, we get paid based on how many students we have. So we either have to work longer days and offer more classes (which won't work well in our current space) or make less money. I might suggest that students are on a rotation. - One week at school, the next week at home so the teachers can maintain an income and keep the students safe. I doubt that would work, but I think at this point, we need to consider everything to keep everyone safe. 

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I really think public responses to respiratory symptoms in workplaces and schools will change towards zero tolerance.

It might become normal for people who cough or sneeze, to say, "Excuse me." -- in a way that actually means they are *leaving* and need to be 'excused'. I can see people saying, "Bless you." in a way that means that means also, "Goodbye, and I hope you feel better soon." I can see us adopting the custom that someone told me (who might not have had the cultural knowledge to be accurate) that in China (?) people go to the restroom to blow their noses, and would never do it in an open area of a home, workplace, or school.

For hand washing, at a kids day camp involving a daily snack, they had a hand-wash station set up with two large metal bowls. One was filled with warm soapy water, an the other with rinse water -- kind of like washing dishes in two sinks. Kids would scrub up in the soapy one, then dip to rinse their hands in the clear one, and there were towels to dry on.

This was very efficient (longer with a 20 second long scrub) and good enough for general cleansing in pre-covid-19 times, but I'm unsure of the functionality of soap-vs-virus in a reused basin. Does the soap entrap the virus? Would it remain trapped (like oils from dishes) and not transfer to the next kid? Does the soap kill the virus, leaving it dead after contact, even if it remains in the water between kids? Or does the soap merely help the virus release, and then (usually) wash down the drain, and the basins would be horrible vectors for infecting all users?

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4 minutes ago, bolt. said:

I really think public responses to respiratory symptoms in workplaces and schools will change towards zero tolerance.

It might become normal for people who cough or sneeze, to say, "Excuse me." -- in a way that actually means they are *leaving* and need to be 'excused'. I can see people saying, "Bless you." in a way that means that means also, "Goodbye, and I hope you feel better soon." I can see us adopting the custom that someone told me (who might not have had the cultural knowledge to be accurate) that in China (?) people go to the restroom to blow their noses, and would never do it in an open area of a home, workplace, or school.

For hand washing, at a kids day camp involving a daily snack, they had a hand-wash station set up with two large metal bowls. One was filled with warm soapy water, an the other with rinse water -- kind of like washing dishes in two sinks. Kids would scrub up in the soapy one, then dip to rinse their hands in the clear one, and there were towels to dry on.

This was very efficient (longer with a 20 second long scrub) and good enough for general cleansing in pre-covid-19 times, but I'm unsure of the functionality of soap-vs-virus in a reused basin. Does the soap entrap the virus? Would it remain trapped (like oils from dishes) and not transfer to the next kid? Does the soap kill the virus, leaving it dead after contact, even if it remains in the water between kids? Or does the soap merely help the virus release, and then (usually) wash down the drain, and the basins would be horrible vectors for infecting all users?

Soap inactivates the virus by destroying its outer layer.

It is quite effective but probably not 100%, I don't think that everyone washing in the same water would be ideal though certainly better than not washing.

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5 minutes ago, bolt. said:

I really think public responses to respiratory symptoms in workplaces and schools will change towards zero tolerance.

It might become normal for people who cough or sneeze, to say, "Excuse me." -- in a way that actually means they are *leaving* and need to be 'excused'. I can see people saying, "Bless you." in a way that means that means also, "Goodbye, and I hope you feel better soon." I can see us adopting the custom that someone told me (who might not have had the cultural knowledge to be accurate) that in China (?) people go to the restroom to blow their noses, and would never do it in an open area of a home, workplace, or school.

 

I feel like this would vary wildly. Leave and go home when you sneeze or cough? We live in allergy country and the schools and streets would be empty. Maybe a better way would be a fever check if someone sneezes or coughs. 

I think 100% attendance also needs to stop being something people are given awards for. It basically means you are getting a prize for 1) having a better immune system than everyone else or 2) coming to school sick. It's crap. I agree on the attendance/finals policy too.

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I think workers will need to wear effective masks / gloves rather than trying to police others' behavior.  You can't tell if someone (or even yourself) is sick based on whether or not they sneeze or cough, or even by their temperature.

I could see a lot of fashionable lines of masks and gloves coming out in the near future ....

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11 hours ago, lmrich said:

We need to think about having students attend on alternate days or having 1/2 the class come in the morning and the other 1/2 come in the afternoon. None of this will be easy. We will all be bothered and inconvenienced by this, but is is worth it. 

I was talking to teachers at one of the hybrid schools where I work, and we agreed to lower our class sizes. However, we get paid based on how many students we have. So we either have to work longer days and offer more classes (which won't work well in our current space) or make less money. I might suggest that students are on a rotation. - One week at school, the next week at home so the teachers can maintain an income and keep the students safe. I doubt that would work, but I think at this point, we need to consider everything to keep everyone safe. 

I think alternate days might be better so that there’s time to clean the building before the next set of students arrives. One half of students could physically attend M/W while the other half is at home doing virtual work; switch on Tues/Thurs. Reduce hours on those days by making them for core classes only. Fridays could be for specials/electives, alternating weeks. So one half would attend physically on 1st and 3rd Friday, other half on 2nd and 4th. 

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