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Our society needs kids to be in school.  Our economy sure as hell needs kids in school full time.  Many kids need to be in school, for a wide variety of reasons.   But kids in school is only safe

One of our good friends is a family practice physician and they were getting swamped by requests by adults when the mask requirements came out. They got together and unanimously decided their response

From my perspective, because of what they've done, crap upon crap happens. Obviously the pandemic itself was out of everyone's control.  But as we have seen around the world, a population's behav

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3 hours ago, Kanin said:

Here's a PDF I ran across today about kids and COVID in Florida: http://ww11.doh.state.fl.us/comm/_partners/covid19_report_archive/pediatric_report_latest.pdf

Over 17,000 kids in Florida have had confirmed case of Covid 19. Over 900 in Orange County. The positivity rate for kids in Orange County is over 20 percent!!!!

2 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

Do you expect any district anywhere to not have rolling closures? I thought mostly in person with whole classes or the entire building dismissed and quarantined at least a few times was pretty much what fall would be. Has someone said differently?

Yes, actually. Plenty of people on our county school facebook page are saying the reason they want schools open is "normalcy" and that they have no one to watch kids at home. But there is nothing normal about sending home whole classrooms on short notice every time there is possible exposure, nothing normal about having teachers having to stay home every time they have so much as a sniffle until they have a negative test (takes weeks here), having kids have to stay home if they have so much as a headache until they have a negative test, etc etc. It won't be normal, and the kids WILL be out of the classroom and home on a frequent basis. They refuse to acknowledge that. 

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10 minutes ago, dmmetler said:

https://www.wmcactionnews5.com/2020/07/13/over-scs-parents-choosing-virtual-option-return-school-so-far/
 

I’m sure it’s somewhat biased since the default is to return to school if you do not elect virtual, but it’s still a much higher percentage than the surveys in May indicated.

77% choosing virtual so far, wow! That doesn't seem to fit the narrative of most parents strongly wanting their kids back in school. 

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7 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

Over 17,000 kids in Florida have had confirmed case of Covid 19. Over 900 in Orange County. The positivity rate for kids in Orange County is over 20 percent!!!!

Yes, actually. Plenty of people on our county school facebook page are saying the reason they want schools open is "normalcy" and that they have no one to watch kids at home. But there is nothing normal about sending home whole classrooms on short notice every time there is possible exposure, nothing normal about having teachers having to stay home every time they have so much as a sniffle until they have a negative test (takes weeks here), having kids have to stay home if they have so much as a headache until they have a negative test, etc etc. It won't be normal, and the kids WILL be out of the classroom and home on a frequent basis. They refuse to acknowledge that. 

If I stay home every time I have a symptom, I might as well just plan to have all my students online. I have 6 prescriptions for allergies for a reason-and with the exception of hives an anaphylaxis, all my allergy symptoms overlap COVID. This morning, it’s a headache and a little wheezy,  but the air quality index is at Orange-so that’s probably the reason. 
 

And my guess is that it would be easier for parents to make arrangements for the full year than on a particular morning because their child has symptoms that are probably a cold, or because their teacher just got a positive test and they have to quarantine for 2 weeks. 

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5 minutes ago, katilac said:

77% choosing virtual so far, wow! That doesn't seem to fit the narrative of most parents strongly wanting their kids back in school. 

 

I am not at ALL surprised by that. There is a very vocal minority of people who want in-person instruction come hell or high water. Most people prefer live, safe kids/relatives over ill ones. For sure some folks don't have other/preferable options but, yeah, I'm not hearing Los Angelenos up in arms or Atlanta residents either.

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4 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Do you figure that you guys have a different virus, or are you just lucky and have managed to infect a less vulnerable population? 

Something being a "low grade concern" will soon become a pressing concern if it actually HAPPENS to people. Opinions shift rapidly once someone you know gets very sick.

One of the school board members here keep saying, "But no kids have had COVID here..."

It makes my head explode. 

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2 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

Do you expect any district anywhere to not have rolling closures?

 

 

IF...  big IF ... our district did it with suitable precautions including masks for all capable of that, and as much physical distance and hybrid system as possible, and IF at least sentinel testing were done every so often, I think our district **theoretically** could do it.  However, this is a small rural district situation where there are fewer than 300 students.  (There are also 2 elementary schools that were closed and decommissioned and several granges which I wonder about possibly providing extra space for Distancing.) 

Unfortunately, currently it looks like the usual complement of foreign exchange students are being welcomed, no masks or distancing seems to be being required, and it looks ready to head toward disaster.  

Quite aside from exchange students who might come in on planes via various major hub airports and have had huge exchange student program group orientation sessions in large cities with more cases, local rural students, staff, and family going into and out of our state’s Main metro area where there is a major CV19 problem (for things that can’t be done rurally or in closer towns/cities with fewer cases) presents a serious problem IMO.  

 

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15 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

Whereas in my circle, of the non-homeschoolers only one has said they want their kids at home. But less than 3% of our positive cases have needed hospital time, and only a very small chunk of them have died, and nobody under 40 last I heard.  Kids getting sick and spreading it to their families is a pretty low grade concern in my little corner of the world. Of my family I visited in the west coast, none of the cousins felt their kids were much as risk at school or daycare either (I’m the only home educator of the bunch).

 

A problem in my area would be that while 3% sounds low, given a situation of ~ 300 population in school, if 9 people, most of them teachers or staff were to need hospitalization, that would devastate the district.  Not only would in school instruction then become impossible, but who would be dealing with the school from home instruction? 

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In our school district, cases have never risen very high and hopefully won't.  I don't know what the plan is if they find out someone came to school with Covid.  I don't think they automatically need to shut it down over one case.  I think it would depend on trends.  That said, yeah, maybe they would shut down for a couple weeks, but I still think that would be better than not opening at all.  They should set kids up on day one with Plan B (virtual access) in case of a shutdown.  I believe my kids' high school issues all kids Chromebooks anyway, so that is a good start.

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12 minutes ago, Kanin said:

One of the school board members here keep saying, "But no kids have had COVID here..."

It makes my head explode. 

🤬🤬🤬

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8 minutes ago, SKL said:

 I don't think they automatically need to shut it down over one case.

Just one case can potentially infect a 100 people inside a high school (which typically has 1000+ students in my area). In my area, high schoolers move from room to room all day long because of electives and tracking into Honors/AP classes etc.

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The international student policy has been reversed. So glad the students will be safe and not worry about things they should not have to.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/14/politics/immigration-harvard-visa-policy-online-only/index.html

So happy !! There was no need for this at all, so I shall refrain from what I want to say.

I am so glad my faith in the education institutions of this country and that people will fight for what is right is very much vindicated. 

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1 hour ago, JennyD said:

 

One thing that I have not seen very much discussed -- in general, not just with kids and schools -- is the psychological impact of passing on this disease.  I think that this is one of the many mental health problems stemming from this pandemic that we are ultimately going to have to deal with. 

FWIW, when my DS15's school closed because of an exposure, it was a much more distressing experience than I had anticipated.  Until we were confident he was negative, DS was consumed by terror that he would pass on the virus to DH and/or myself.  Fortunately, we were all fine, but I would not underestimate the impact that school closures will have on children who are old enough to understand what is going on.  

Yes, this exactly.

Too few people are talking honestly about the realities of how opening up just to shut back down affects our mental health. Instead they still cling to the narrative that “meh, if someone tests positive the school can just close for a couple weeks and the reopen back to normal” but that’s a completely false reality. 
 

Our kids are traumatized. Why are too many of us encouraging it to get worse? 

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2 minutes ago, Dreamergal said:

The international student policy has been reversed. So glad the students will be safe and not worry about things they should not have to.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/14/politics/immigration-harvard-visa-policy-online-only/index.html

So happy !! There was no need for this at all, so I shall refrain from what I want to say.

I am so glad my faith in the education institutions of this country and that people will fight for what is right is very much vindicated. 

Good news for sure, if predictable. 
 

 

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3 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Yes, this exactly.

Too few people are talking honestly about the realities of how opening up just to shut back down affects our mental health. Instead they still cling to the narrative that “meh, if someone tests positive the school can just close for a couple weeks and the reopen back to normal” but that’s a completely false reality. 
 

Our kids are traumatized. Why are too many of us encouraging it to get worse? 

We were just told that school wouldn't automatically close if someone tests positive. There's a yet to be determined threshhold number that will be set by the health dept. 

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42 minutes ago, dmmetler said:

If I stay home every time I have a symptom, I might as well just plan to have all my students online. And my guess is that it would be easier for parents to make arrangements for the full year than on a particular morning because their child has symptoms that are probably a cold, or because their teacher just got a positive test and they have to quarantine for 2 weeks. 

Yeah, I've had congestion and sneezing and an on and off headache and a morning cough for weeks. I always do when the Bahia grass pollen is high. I've had allergy testing, we know I'm allergic too it, and I can see the seed heads in all my neighbors' yards. But would people want to trust that enough to have me teach their kid? And if we do say, "well, Katie knows if it is allergies, she can teach with a stuffy nose and post nasal discharge that she keeps coughing up" how do you then stop someone else, who is truly sick, but says they just have allergies, from coming into the classroom? You can't. So you will have people having to stay home so frequently I don't see how it will be possible to have a normal in person class. And that's hwat people want, normalcy. 

34 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

Whereas in my circle, of the non-homeschoolers only one has said they want their kids at home. But less than 3% of our positive cases have needed hospital time, and only a very small chunk of them have died, and nobody under 40 last I heard.  Kids getting sick and spreading it to their families is a pretty low grade concern in my little corner of the world. Of my family I visited in the west coast, none of the cousins felt their kids were much as risk at school or daycare either (I’m the only home educator of the bunch).

yeah, 14% of our cases have needed the Emergency room, 8% of our cases have been admitted for inpatient care, and 1.5% have died. Local pediatricians are speaking out that yes, they are seeing very sick kids from this. So..yeah. Maybe our area is just less healthy, who knows. 

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3 minutes ago, Pippen said:

We were just told that school wouldn't automatically close if someone tests positive. There's a yet to be determined threshhold number that will be set by the health dept. 

Would the class be sent home to isolate though? I mean, I can see not closing the school if you have one kindergartner positive in a school of 500 kids, and that kindergartner was never around say, the 5th graders or even in the same hallways. 

But surely they'd send home that class of kindergarteners for two weeks or whatever, right?

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We've had 3 close people die this year (one just yesterday), none related to Covid.  Health risks are the norm in kids' lives.  Sick kids spreading germs at school are also a frequent occurance regardless of Covid.  If anything, there may be less of that with all the new procedures.

I don't think anyone really thinks "back to normal" is the goal.  They may be saying those words because they come out naturally, but I think what they really mean is "back to doing essential human things like learning and interacting with peers."

While closures after school starts could impact mental health, I think it would be mitigated if kids go in knowing the possibilities, unlike last year which ended with one bad surprise after another.

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24 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Good news for sure, if predictable. 
 

 

It goes beyond these students. It is policy and about who belongs here and who should be here. 

One of the things you hear as an immigrant from racist people repeatedly is "Go back to your country", but you learn to look away because it is not the majority and most definitely not policy. 

This was directly "Go back to your country" even in the midst of a pandemic as policy with no flights, borders closed, using vulnerable students as a political football and some vendetta against educational institutions it seemed like based on a tweet. 

That is very hard to take for anyone who has ever come here as a student because it is policy and however it is spun as it does not affect us, it does matter because how can we not identify with students when we were once the same as them. 

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20 minutes ago, SKL said:

We've had 3 close people die this year (one just yesterday), none related to Covid.  Health risks are the norm in kids' lives.  Sick kids spreading germs at school are also a frequent occurance regardless of Covid.  If anything, there may be less of that with all the new procedures.

I don't think anyone really thinks "back to normal" is the goal.  They may be saying those words because they come out naturally, but I think what they really mean is "back to doing essential human things like learning and interacting with peers."

While closures after school starts could impact mental health, I think it would be mitigated if kids go in knowing the possibilities, unlike last year which ended with one bad surprise after another.

Oh, they absolutely do know the possibilities.  Why don’t the powers that be? 


Also, closures in March weren’t really a surprise. We had been waiting and waiting and were relieved when it finally happened. I mean, it was obvious in January.

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4 minutes ago, Dreamergal said:

It goes beyond these students. It is policy and about who belongs here and who should be here. 

One of the things you hear as an immigrant from racist people repeatedly is "Go back to your country", but you learn to look away because it is not the majority and most definitely not policy. 

This was directly "Go back to your country" even in the midst of a pandemic as policy with no flights, borders closed, using vulnerable students as a political football and some vendetta against educational institutions it seemed like based on a tweet. 

That is very hard to take for anyone who has ever come here as a student because it is policy and however it is spun as it does not affect us, it does matter because how can we not identify with students when we were once the same as them. 

Of course. 

I have a lot to say but won’t here on why I used the word predictable. I assume you understand. 

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15 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Of course. 

I have a lot to say but won’t here on why I used the word predictable. I assume you understand. 

I have a lot to say too but most times I am afraid of offending in real life or breaking rules here and getting banned.

But I am getting braver now that I can speak up about what I have directly lived, especially about policy that hits so close to home and how it feels even if does not "directly" affect me. 

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1 hour ago, Ktgrok said:

Would the class be sent home to isolate though? I mean, I can see not closing the school if you have one kindergartner positive in a school of 500 kids, and that kindergartner was never around say, the 5th graders or even in the same hallways. 

But surely they'd send home that class of kindergarteners for two weeks or whatever, right?

That's all the detail that we have been given. 

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Our school plan says that if there is a case in the school, they will cooperate with the local health department, who will do contact tracing. Somehow this will "limit the disruption" in case of infection.

I have a lot of questions about this, but I imagine the school is being inundated with calls and questions right now about the plans (they said to call if your question wasn't answered by the document they sent out), so I'll wait to see if more details emerge.

It sounds like our school will not automatically shut down with one case, but there is no way to tell from that statement what they will actually DO. High school students will come into contact with so many people each day that contact tracing will be a snarly nightmare.

I'd like to know if they plan to notify parents when there is a case within the school.

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2 hours ago, square_25 said:

A 3% hospitalization rate doesn't sound low to me at ALL.

 

 

It’s at least low compared to 20%. (At one point, iirc, 80% of cases were “mild” to Asymptomatic, but 1 in 5 was needing hospital support. ) 

 

2 hours ago, square_25 said:

First of all, that's largely spread out over people over 40, so it's much more for them. So say we have a 6% hospitalization rate for people over 40. That means that given, say, 4 adults over 40, the chance of one of them getting hospitalized is about 1 in 5. That's a pretty high chance of disruption... 

Yes.   And also

Right now in my geographical region around half the cases in hospital are said to be under 40. 

And relatively younger patients are supposedly most of who are now in ICU in Texas  and I think also Arizona where there are ICU filling up problems. 

A lot of our teachers are older with worse prognoses. 

2 hours ago, square_25 said:

 

And yeah, let's take all the teachers -- the chance of one of them being hospitalized is incredibly high. And how long will people be willing to show up to work with a coworker in the hospital from a communicable disease, anyway? 

 

 

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2 hours ago, SKL said:

I don't think anyone really thinks "back to normal" is the goal.  They may be saying those words because they come out naturally, but I think what they really mean is "back to doing essential human things like learning and interacting with peers."

Whereas I generally think that what people say is pretty much what they mean. Most of the 'back to normal' folks I've heard from have been clear that they do indeed mean exactly that: back to school, back to all activities including band, sports, and choir, and certainly not students wearing masks. 

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Our community seems to have a fairly equal mix of people who want no restrictions placed on school at all, and people who won't feel comfortable without the maximum restrictions possible. 

We had a staff Zoom meeting the other day and it really seemed like a lot of folks didn't have too much knowledge about how masks catch droplets, that there are aerosols and droplets that are different, and more. It was eye opening. I guess I've been reading a lot on this forum and forget that not everyone is digesting every detail. 

Nobody had anything particularly negative to say about masks except that they can be uncomfortable, and it's just "hard to picture" kids wearing them. Some of us would reiterate that they're not going to wear masks ALL DAY - there will be outdoor breaks, recess, lunch, more outdoor breaks, etc. But then five minutes later, someone would say, "yeah, but thinking of them wearing masks ALL DAY." I could have screamed! I need to have a document up on the screen listing the things we've already debunked (repeatedly!). 

Oh yeah, and the desks that were supposed to be 6 feet apart won't be possible in some classrooms, so they're going to be 3 feet apart. The nurse present tried to drive home that 6 feet is not a "magic number," but I'm not sure it mattered.

Oh yeah, and people have really latched on to the American Academy of Pediatrics statement saying that the risks of not opening schools is greater than the risk of opening schools. They're also taking the advice to be "flexible" and "nimble" as ways to make the safety protocols less strong.

A quote from the AAP guidelines is: "Evidence suggests that spacing as close as 3 feet may approach the benefits of 6 feet of space, particularly if students are wearing face coverings and are asymptomatic."

Yet, people on the school board are quoting that 3 feet is okay, but not also saying that masks should be mandatory. 

I get the strong feeling that my colleagues and administrators are trying their darndest to do a good job, but they just don't have enough knowledge to do it. They're also taking community opinion into consideration, even when the community opinion is not based on current evidence.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Kanin said:

Our community seems to have a fairly equal mix of people who want no restrictions placed on school at all, and people who won't feel comfortable without the maximum restrictions possible. 

We had a staff Zoom meeting the other day and it really seemed like a lot of folks didn't have too much knowledge about how masks catch droplets, that there are aerosols and droplets that are different, and more. It was eye opening. I guess I've been reading a lot on this forum and forget that not everyone is digesting every detail. 

Nobody had anything particularly negative to say about masks except that they can be uncomfortable, and it's just "hard to picture" kids wearing them. Some of us would reiterate that they're not going to wear masks ALL DAY - there will be outdoor breaks, recess, lunch, more outdoor breaks, etc. But then five minutes later, someone would say, "yeah, but thinking of them wearing masks ALL DAY." I could have screamed! I need to have a document up on the screen listing the things we've already debunked (repeatedly!). 

Oh yeah, and the desks that were supposed to be 6 feet apart won't be possible in some classrooms, so they're going to be 3 feet apart. The nurse present tried to drive home that 6 feet is not a "magic number," but I'm not sure it mattered.

Oh yeah, and people have really latched on to the American Academy of Pediatrics statement saying that the risks of not opening schools is greater than the risk of opening schools. They're also taking the advice to be "flexible" and "nimble" as ways to make the safety protocols less strong.

A quote from the AAP guidelines is: "Evidence suggests that spacing as close as 3 feet may approach the benefits of 6 feet of space, particularly if students are wearing face coverings and are asymptomatic."

Yet, people on the school board are quoting that 3 feet is okay, but not also saying that masks should be mandatory. 

I get the strong feeling that my colleagues and administrators are trying their darndest to do a good job, but they just don't have enough knowledge to do it. They're also taking community opinion into consideration, even when the community opinion is not based on current evidence.

 

 

 

Did they miss that the AAP walked that statement back the very next day? UGH.

https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/07/10/889848834/nations-pediatricians-walk-back-support-for-in-person-school

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My school board has been in a meeting about this since noon. It is now almost 9pm and they are still going. Ironically, several board members have not been able to keep their mask on and one has switched it out, taken it off, etc. She's in charge. Almost every single teacher, parent and student and every dotor and laywer speaking has said we need to be 100 percent virtual. But it won't matter. Because the state and county have tied their hands. 

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Our school district's plan is either a) 100% virtual, or b) 4 days a week in person with no attempts at social distancing.  

There is, of course, no testing.  They're asking teachers not to come to work sick but are not increasing sick leave.  

Because of transportation issues, elementary schools will go either 7-2 or 8-3 (half do 7-2; the other half of the elementary schools do 8-3).  High schools do 9-4, and middle schools do 10-5.  

Everyone does virtual learning on Fridays.  

I fail to see how the in person plan solves the need for child care for families.  

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9 hours ago, square_25 said:

Do you figure that you guys have a different virus, or are you just lucky and have managed to infect a less vulnerable population? 

I have a very different perspective than Arctic Mama and live in the same general area of the same state. Our governor is going to have a special address tomorrow evening rather than the regular press conference, our entire corner of the state has cases that are rising rapidly, and multiple counties nearby have rates high enough that they've instituted a mask mandate for those counties. I don't consider our area to be faring well at all. Meanwhile, the sheriff in one of the counties that is supposed to mask made a big production on media saying he isn't going to enforce the mask order (all public health orders are enforced by the health department, which is abundantly clear from past press conferences), and he also basically laid out a blueprint for how to get around the order (he can't ask you about health issues that would lead to not wearing a mask). It was a bunch of grandstanding to thank those who voted him into office, IMO. He laid on a folksy Southern-ish accent and all but winked his way through the whole thing. It was gross.

Meanwhile testing is available, but it seems like results are quite slow--this is going to make contact tracing difficult. 

Our state is on a list that has to quarantine if we enter NY state. 

I am ready to be beamed up now to someplace more sane. Apparently we want to be FL. People are starting to wear masks more, but I think it's largely because they are mandated. A large chunk of people stated outright that they would come to my county to shop since our county isn't quite at the mask mandate stage (I basically live on the county line). Many local people are just as likely to homeschool if their kids are asked to mask at school as to be worried about the virus. 

9 hours ago, Arctic Mama said:

Yeah, my area has fared well. Maybe it will continue. Who can say but time? 

 

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5 hours ago, kbutton said:

I have a very different perspective than Arctic Mama and live in the same general area of the same state. Our governor is going to have a special address tomorrow evening rather than the regular press conference, our entire corner of the state has cases that are rising rapidly, and multiple counties nearby have rates high enough that they've instituted a mask mandate for those counties. I don't consider our area to be faring well at all. Meanwhile, the sheriff in one of the counties that is supposed to mask made a big production on media saying he isn't going to enforce the mask order (all public health orders are enforced by the health department, which is abundantly clear from past press conferences), and he also basically laid out a blueprint for how to get around the order (he can't ask you about health issues that would lead to not wearing a mask). It was a bunch of grandstanding to thank those who voted him into office, IMO. He laid on a folksy Southern-ish accent and all but winked his way through the whole thing. It was gross.

Meanwhile testing is available, but it seems like results are quite slow--this is going to make contact tracing difficult. 

Our state is on a list that has to quarantine if we enter NY state. 

I am ready to be beamed up now to someplace more sane. Apparently we want to be FL. People are starting to wear masks more, but I think it's largely because they are mandated. A large chunk of people stated outright that they would come to my county to shop since our county isn't quite at the mask mandate stage (I basically live on the county line). Many local people are just as likely to homeschool if their kids are asked to mask at school as to be worried about the virus. 

 

Thank you for sharing your balanced perspective. 

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We finally got a survey from our school department. It was all of six questions, with no opportunity for multiple answers or for comments. I have been consistently impressed with our local district but they have totally dropped the communication ball. According to a news report, we won’t even know any potential plan until August.

I understand there are no absolutes—and shouldn’t be yet with 6 weeks before the start of school—but I have no idea how working parents are supposed to plan for the year ahead. There were no questions about masking or a family’s work situation, nothing much at all beyond will you send your kid this year. Bah. 
 

I hope the powers that be are more thoughtful than they are conveying and that the teachers at least have more information than we do.

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5 hours ago, kbutton said:

I have a very different perspective than Arctic Mama and live in the same general area of the same state. Our governor is going to have a special address tomorrow evening rather than the regular press conference, our entire corner of the state has cases that are rising rapidly, and multiple counties nearby have rates high enough that they've instituted a mask mandate for those counties. I don't consider our area to be faring well at all. Meanwhile, the sheriff in one of the counties that is supposed to mask made a big production on media saying he isn't going to enforce the mask order (all public health orders are enforced by the health department, which is abundantly clear from past press conferences), and he also basically laid out a blueprint for how to get around the order (he can't ask you about health issues that would lead to not wearing a mask). It was a bunch of grandstanding to thank those who voted him into office, IMO. He laid on a folksy Southern-ish accent and all but winked his way through the whole thing. It was gross.

Meanwhile testing is available, but it seems like results are quite slow--this is going to make contact tracing difficult. 

Our state is on a list that has to quarantine if we enter NY state. 

I am ready to be beamed up now to someplace more sane. Apparently we want to be FL. People are starting to wear masks more, but I think it's largely because they are mandated. A large chunk of people stated outright that they would come to my county to shop since our county isn't quite at the mask mandate stage (I basically live on the county line). Many local people are just as likely to homeschool if their kids are asked to mask at school as to be worried about the virus. 

 


I’m at the other end of the state in a hotspot and I agree with this. Our area doesn’t even have a lot of testing, it feels like we’re flying blind. (And what you said about your county is why the patchwork mask mandate isn’t going to work.) 

 

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11 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

My school board has been in a meeting about this since noon. It is now almost 9pm and they are still going. Ironically, several board members have not been able to keep their mask on and one has switched it out, taken it off, etc. She's in charge. Almost every single teacher, parent and student and every dotor and laywer speaking has said we need to be 100 percent virtual. But it won't matter. Because the state and county have tied their hands. 

Whoa! What ended up happening?

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Just now, Ausmumof3 said:

https://www.hazelwoodschools.org/cms/lib/MO01909922/Centricity/Domain/396/Parent Permission and Waiver.docx
 

hmm I wonder how people feel about signing waivers for if their kids get Covid?

I guess the people who continue to say they want their kids to get it or who insist they don’t care won’t mind. Something something about personal responsibility. 
 

Maybe a waiver would serve as a wake up call for the majority, though, who obviously want to avoid their children and communities from becoming experiments in this horror show.

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59 minutes ago, MEmama said:

We finally got a survey from our school department. It was all of six questions, with no opportunity for multiple answers or for comments. I have been consistently impressed with our local district but they have totally dropped the communication ball. According to a news report, we won’t even know any potential plan until August.

I understand there are no absolutes—and shouldn’t be yet with 6 weeks before the start of school—but I have no idea how working parents are supposed to plan for the year ahead. There were no questions about masking or a family’s work situation, nothing much at all beyond will you send your kid this year. Bah. 
 

I hope the powers that be are more thoughtful than they are conveying and that the teachers at least have more information than we do.

Oh, that's stressful. No comment section?! Sorry the questions were so useless.

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5 minutes ago, MEmama said:

I guess the people who continue to say they want their kids to get it or who insist they don’t care won’t mind. Something something about personal responsibility. 
 

Maybe a waiver would serve as a wake up call for the majority, though, who obviously want to avoid their children and communities from becoming experiments in this horror show.

I think this one is only for athletic activities etc so like the standard waiver but with a Covid clause added.  Wondering how many schools will go that way though.

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4 minutes ago, Kanin said:

Oh, that's stressful. No comment section?! Sorry the questions were so useless.

Yeah, the complete lack of detail was surprising.

If you by chance come across some super secret insider information about the schools in my town, I’d love to know! Lol

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6 hours ago, kbutton said:

I have a very different perspective than Arctic Mama and live in the same general area of the same state. Our governor is going to have a special address tomorrow evening rather than the regular press conference, our entire corner of the state has cases that are rising rapidly, and multiple counties nearby have rates high enough that they've instituted a mask mandate for those counties. I don't consider our area to be faring well at all. Meanwhile, the sheriff in one of the counties that is supposed to mask made a big production on media saying he isn't going to enforce the mask order (all public health orders are enforced by the health department, which is abundantly clear from past press conferences), and he also basically laid out a blueprint for how to get around the order (he can't ask you about health issues that would lead to not wearing a mask). It was a bunch of grandstanding to thank those who voted him into office, IMO. He laid on a folksy Southern-ish accent and all but winked his way through the whole thing. It was gross.

 

This. We are in Warren County. I have friends in Hamilton and Butler and Clermont Counties (all on mask mandates). We don't have a mask mandate. In Warren County (adjacent to Hamilton and  Butler) there is a general attitude I am noticing on FB of "everything is just fine here" and I see about 10-20% masking in most places.  Even the local leaders are pushing this idea that the pandemic is not really in our county. Testing is really slow now--a friend waited eight days for her test.  People here are questioning the governor's color system and why Butler County is on the warning for purple (the worst case).  Meanwhile, Butler county's data is nearly impossible to navigate--they don't have it on their website for their health district, and the state's website is really frustrating to use to figure out what county specific numbers are.  So some people feel like they are being forced to wear masks unnecessarily, and that the color system is a sham.

My observation based on what ArticMama has said is that her area is just different.  It is not so strange that in a state as large as ours you could have extremely different responses from one county to another. I am glad for ArticMama that she feels safe and that she thinks people in her area are being responsible for the most part.  I am not seeing that in my area the way I would like. 

 

 

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36 minutes ago, Kanin said:

Whoa! What ended up happening?

They finally, around 11pm I think, ended up adjourning and said they would reconvene on Friday. Partly that was because one of the board members was having technical difficulties and kept getting kicked out of the meeting. Because yes, the meeting to decide if kids should do in person school was partially virtual, only a few board members were in person, I believe. 

Hours and hours and hours of public comment from teachers, students, pediatricians, lawyers, etc. Only a few (who were saying demonstrably false things about the virus - it's the flu!) were for reopening in person. But...the school board is still saying they have to vote to reopen, because of the state mandate. Personally, I think they need to vote for what is right, and if the state wants to override them, let them do that so the fall out is on them rather than the board. To do otherwise is just hiding behind an excuse. 

Meanwhile next county over (many of my friends are in Seminole county, I shop in Seminole County, etc) voted to have 3 options, including full time in person. I don't think their teachers union is very happy. The teachers are REALLY upset in my county and I'm sure it is the same there - protests have been held, etc. Not only are they worried about the risk to themselves in the classroom, but worried about their children, because if they have to be in the classroom they will have to send their children as well. 

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32 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Yeah, the complete lack of detail was surprising.

If you by chance come across some super secret insider information about the schools in my town, I’d love to know! Lol

Ha, I'll try to snoop! 

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This infographic is being shared constantly by the Florida Department of Heath. Can anyone explain to me how schools are NOT places with crowds, confined spaces, and close conversations? 

I've emailed the county mayor, the school board, the local department of health, and the state education commissioner asking why these guidelines don't apply to schools, and how it is safe to ignore them for 6-7 hours a day, 5 days a week, in a room with 20-35 other people, on a campus of thousands?

 

107902485_3085996684817828_260789333158242577_o.jpg

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Ok, someone explain to me how this wouldn't work, if we as a society wanted it to? (again this is based on an area with uncontrolled spread, thousands of children already infected, summer programs already have positive students as young as 4 years old...etc)

Highschools and middle go to virtual only (other than special education). Have elementary kids do a virtual program, BUT for those that don't have anyone at home to supervise them have an option for them to do virtual, but on campus. Because the middle schools and high schools are empty you can do spread out and use those buildings, to have very small (five kids max) class sizes. Because they are doing work virtually, instead of grouping by grade, group siblings together. That reduces exposure further. And I know you won't have enough teachers, obviously, but because they are doing virtual school you don't need them - just a safe adult to act as an aid, or as they call them in the college level, a "lab assistant" to help kids log in, answer questions, and keep them safe during the day. Wouldn't have to be certified teachers, and could very well count towards credit for education majors if colleges will change their guidelines for that. And it would be easier to find those people both because they wouldn't need any particular certification, and because with a max of 5 kids in a class and often only 2 or 3 sibling groups, , it would be MUCH safer.

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A friend just posted this. https://covid19risk.biosci.gatech.edu/?fbclid=IwAR1RqNyPBIFy9QXDJlHCcwzjK0-blYlzJx4bPRrtFTpOvH-utuW_WLU0o1M

This map shows the risk level of attending an event, given the event size and location (assuming 10:1 ascertainment bias).

The risk level is the estimated chance (0-100%) that at least 1 COVID-19 positive individual will be present at an event in a county, given the size of the event

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9 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

Ok, someone explain to me how this wouldn't work, if we as a society wanted it to? (again this is based on an area with uncontrolled spread, thousands of children already infected, summer programs already have positive students as young as 4 years old...etc)

Highschools and middle go to virtual only (other than special education). Have elementary kids do a virtual program, BUT for those that don't have anyone at home to supervise them have an option for them to do virtual, but on campus. Because the middle schools and high schools are empty you can do spread out and use those buildings, to have very small (five kids max) class sizes. Because they are doing work virtually, instead of grouping by grade, group siblings together. That reduces exposure further. And I know you won't have enough teachers, obviously, but because they are doing virtual school you don't need them - just a safe adult to act as an aid, or as they call them in the college level, a "lab assistant" to help kids log in, answer questions, and keep them safe during the day. Wouldn't have to be certified teachers, and could very well count towards credit for education majors if colleges will change their guidelines for that. And it would be easier to find those people both because they wouldn't need any particular certification, and because with a max of 5 kids in a class and often only 2 or 3 sibling groups, , it would be MUCH safer.

Brilliant. 

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6 minutes ago, cintinative said:

A friend just posted this. https://covid19risk.biosci.gatech.edu/?fbclid=IwAR1RqNyPBIFy9QXDJlHCcwzjK0-blYlzJx4bPRrtFTpOvH-utuW_WLU0o1M

This map shows the risk level of attending an event, given the event size and location (assuming 10:1 ascertainment bias).

The risk level is the estimated chance (0-100%) that at least 1 COVID-19 positive individual will be present at an event in a county, given the size of the event

This is neat! But best viewed on something larger than a phone screen. 

It’s like when you’re selling a house, though; it only takes one buyer for the deal to happen.  

Edited by Seasider too
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