Back to School in the New Normal Debate: Understanding COVID-19 Precautions

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Who remembers when almost every kid has fantasized about school being canceled? In 2020 that wish came true when school was ordered closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents were begging for kids to go back to school, but, now they are not so sure that the classroom will be safe. Parents and teachers will be debating the board of education and the President’s wishes for school to reopen this fall.

UPDATED” 7/31/2020 ‘Homeschooling’ doesn’t have to equal ‘isolation’ under the Home-schooling and more. below. Be sure to click on the link below or click HERE to read and take notes on a 30-minute video that is MUST watch for parents debating whether to send your kids back-to-school or home school. There are amazing resources I never thought of.

The young and the restless were begging for their communities in their state to re-open sooner than they should. Let’s learn from that lesson – be careful what you wish for and don’t go hog wild.

So what’s a mother or father to do? My answer is to arm your self with the facts that are important to you for your child’s best interest. And do not be afraid to error on the side of caution. ( I’m sorry to say, that we may be “damned if we do and damned if we don’t.” )

 

Who remembers when almost every kid has fantasized about school being canceled? In 2020 that wish came true when school was ordered closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

 

It’s almost Back-to-School time for the 2020/ 2021 school year. Parents and kids are wishing they could get out of the house to see their friends at school activities…screech!…but not so fast…we have a pandemic in progress.

 

Breaking News

I have good news and sad news.

The sad news is this: Back in June, there was a youth camp in Georgia, that you may have already read about, that suffered an epidemic of COVID-19 among camp counselor staff and youth.

The good news is researchers just published their findings from this sour camp experience which now gives all of us some credible facts to go by when the school bell for fall classes was supposed to ring. (There were actually 2 studies published very recently and mentioned in the quote for Web MD below.)

The study was published July 31 in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, a journal of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

Universal Mask wearing is not going to make the anti-maskers happy at all. We all need to mind a common ground solution PDQ.

Check out another post by No Non-cents Nanna. The Great Mask Debate

 

Should schools close for coronavirus?

…children are major spreaders of the flu, but it’s unclear if the same is true for the new coronavirus. The World Health Organization’s report on a mission to China found children made up just 2.4% of coronavirus cases.

https://www.livescience.com/should-schools-close-for-coronavirus.html

 

President Trump wants the school to re-open in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. But, parents are no so sure that it is safe, yet, for their children to congregate with other kids. Parents and teachers alike are debating over when and how to safely re-open schools. No matter what children need a basic education in their formatives years. Not every parent is home-school teacher material. Not every household has the internet to connect some kind of computerized device.

  • There are pros and cons to think through. Hopefully, we can all put our heads together to make wise decisions in the best interest of future adults.
  • We do have Public Health guidance for infection control- but can the school district afford it?
  • . Other than the written history of pandemics, we do not have a guide-book written for parents, lawmakers, Presidents, and state Governors during a worldwide contagious disease outbreak.
  • Educators have prepared pre-pandemic curriculums
  • Psychologists can give us tips on how to help our children feel safe and secure
  • But, the world is in a pandemic with a highly contagious novel virus that we still do not know everything we need to know to treat it.
  • The number of positive COVID-19 tests is soaring while too many individuals are defying recommendations to wear face-masks and limit contacts.

 

What is the lesser of two evils?

  1. Go back to class-rooms at school potentially starting a massive outbreak
  2. or Stay at home continuing to isolate our home-schooled kids?
  3. Could there be another alternative or 2?

 

School Reopening ‘Important for Our Public Health’

Children appear to be at lower risk for contracting COVID-19 compared to adults,” the CDC said. “No studies are conclusive, but the available evidence provides reason to believe that in-person schooling is in the best interest of students. …”

Schools help the growth of “the whole child,” the CDC … nutrition and socialization…“…the harms attributed to closed schools on the social, emotional, and behavioral health, economic well-being, and academic achievement of children, in both the short- and long-term…k of in-person educational options disproportionately harms low-income and minority children and those living with disabilities.”… social distancing and sanitation and suggest children be placed in pods, with the same teacher with the same group of children. Entry and exit i… done in phases and outdoor spaces…The guidelines do not call for routine screening of students.

 

 

 

Back-to-School Debate

Ready…set…GO!

“The White House’s round-table gathered health and education leaders from across the nation who said schools and colleges are ready to open this fall and can do so safely.” (See quote below.)

Are you kidding me? Ready? Really? If that is true, and I don’t think so at this time, why is it that so many parents are not feeling comfortable with this plan?

I strongly encourage discussions to be non-political. Keep our emotions in check and our language limited to words we won’t have to eat later on. You want to be taken seriously on why, exactly you don’t want to risk your child’s life, his/ her peer’s lives, and the teachers’ lives. So you prepare your thoughts on going back-to-school like a responsible adult capable of managing your children’s lives, right?

 

7 Reasons NOT To Use Curse Words …

Prepare your argument by researching: talking to others including someone on the other side of the debate; making an argument—expressing a point of view on a subject and supporting it with evidence—

( Hopefully, this blog post will get you started.)

How To Construct Arguments Like A Pro – How to write English

https://www.writeenglish.org/how-to-write/construct-arguments-pro

“An argument is a combination of claims, along with all the reasons you have in support of each claim. Valid arguments attempt to convince the reader on the veracity of the claim by relying on empirical descriptive evidence, statistics, and definition to make its case.”

 

Let’s get started with President Trump and State Governors pushing to open the schools. You disagree with opening schools too soon, because…why?

Or, could it be that you think your children will be protected well enough from an epidemic that they should not only go back-to-school in the fall but, they should have never stayed -home from school in the first place. (Well, that is water under the bridge, now.)

 

The White House’s round-table gathered health and education leaders from across the nation who said schools and colleges are ready to open this fall and can do so safely.

Trump said “… We’re very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools.”

…argued that the risks of keeping students at home outweigh any risks tied to the coronavirus, saying students need access to meal programs and mental and behavioral health services.

 American Academy of Pediatrics… issued guidelines suggesting that schools aim to start… “physically present in school.” Keeping students at home can lead to social isolation, the organization said, and prevent schools from identifying learning deficits, abuse, depression and other issues.

Students’ mental and emotional health — along with their parents’ — was repeatedly raised in the argument to reopen schools.

Associated Press writers

 

We simply can not keep our children in a permanent isolation bubble without someone going totally bonkers. That is a statement about maintaining a healthy mental balance that could be worded better.

I honestly do not think there is going to be a perfect one-size-fits-all answer for every family with school-age children. Therefore I have gleaned possibilities for going-back-to-school. As parents or teachers, you have to make your own decisions based on what you have to work with. I’ll list some of those things to consider below along with clickable links to the “experts” as this post moves along.

Before we go on any further I want to stress upon you, parents, that it is the adults’ job to promote safety and security in our children. Don’t we all know how uncertain life is right now in July 2020? It is OK to tell them that you don’t know all the answers, but, you will do your best to figure out the best available solution (it may be temporary,) based on the current facts given to you.

 

“The thought of homeschooling makes me want to barf,” Parcak wrote on Twitter. “Our goal is to have our son come out of this happy and not be long-term emotionally scarred (lord knows life will do that anyways).”

Helping Children Feel Safe in Stressful Times

Back in January 2020 before Stay-at-Home orders best to figure out the best available le solution.rs that thrust us into the Twilight Zone teachers, parents and children were concerned with being safe from bullying and violence. ( I feel bad for bringing up this subject that we may have had a vacation from.)

 

 

Are we back to school or back to square one?

 

Are we back to square one: Back-to-school during COVID-19 pandemic No Non-cents Nanna

 

… coronavirus pandemic continues, back-to-school season … With the possible exception of mask-wearing, no topic is generating as much debate right now as the reopening of schools.

How are children impacted by the virus, and how much do they spread the virus?

… current evidence suggests … young children do not contract the novel coronavirus as frequently as adults do, nor do they get as sick with Covid-19. But, we can’t be too cavalier … a small fraction of children clearly do get sick… smaller portion suffers severe consequences… Multi-system Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C). 

…vulnerable children who have chronic health conditions and who need to be protected.

… 1.5 million teachers are at higher risk of serious illness if they contract coronavirus… need to consider … can (children) spread it to school staff and vulnerable adults at home.

 

Promoting School Safety

Updated: January 23, 2020
Learn what schools are doing to keep children safe, and what you can do to help promote school safety.

 

If millions of students are raring to get back to school, what IF millions of teachers don’t feel safe to go back to the classroom? That flip-flop could create an unprecedented staffing shortage in modern times.

Nationwide, 1 in 5 teachers said they were unlikely to return to school if their buildings opened this fall, according to a USA TODAY/Ipsos poll in late May.

That would be a horse of a different color to hear the teacher say, ” But, I don’t want to get up and go to school, Mom.”

 

Coronavirus and Schools

The coronavirus pandemic has upended America’s K-12 education system, as most schools in every state close their doors for extended periods to combat the spread of the virus. Here, find the most relevant news, information, and resources on how schools are being impacted…

The Coronavirus Spring: The Historic Closing of U.S. Schools

July 1, 2020

COVID-19 created a mass disruption of schooling in the spring of 2020. Here is how it happened….

What to Watch for in Any New Coronavirus Bailout for Schools

The National Education Association Is Projecting a 125,000-Member Loss Due to COVID Layoffs

July 2, 2020

Despite the projected membership loss, the union’s revenue will increase by about $7 million next year because of a dues increase for teachers and support employees.

 

Help me think this through… The federal government and the states governments provide fundings for public schools. The government has certain standards that teachers in school districts must adhere to. I get it…but…

I have concerns about all of this pushiness and rush to reopen schools when they were shut down for “good reason”.

What? Did the reason all of a sudden dramatically change? Yes and No. The surge of positive cases overwhelming hospitals in some states are out-of-control..m-m-m? Isn’t that what we wanted to avoid when the schools closed early in the spring of 2020?

 

School reopening plans are now part of COVID-19 politics. Teachers fear for their safety.

Coronavirus cases soaring … some states are pausing the reopening of their economies. … pressure … to reopen schools full-time this fall — state politicians, the White House, pediatricians and parents.

Teachers are caught in the middle.

… many desperately want to return to their classrooms… worried… putting themselves or their families at risk of getting sick…how likely … once adults begin working in close quarters in school buildings…

If millions of students elect to return to class while millions of teachers don’t, it could create a staffing shortage unlike anything seen in modern times.

Nationwide, 1 in 5 teachers said they were unlikely to return to school if their buildings opened this fall, according to a USA TODAY/Ipsos poll in late May.

Remote learning:Parents and kids hate online learning. How can we improve it?

 

I love this statement quoted below, “simply look at the data instead of focusing on fear.”

Fact vs. fear in the back-to-school debate

Thursday, July 30, 2020 Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

Opinions are mixed on the idea of schools opening in some parts of the country, and one RN and advocate for health freedom suggests we simply look at the data instead of focusing on fear.

Cases have reportedly been increasing in recent weeks for states large and small, which is why critics of the “reopen schools” movement say now is not the time to have a lot of people of various ages in tight spaces where the ability to socially distance is not practical.

 

How can social isolation be prevented?

Parent Tune has some reasonable suggestions on how to help children adapt during self-isolation and some possible strategies to try.

Keep in mind that kids thrive on healthy routines. They may have lost the routine of weekday bedtime the up in the morning to go to school.

Can we find ways to have some peer interaction? I think we CAN…

 

COVID-19: Impact of Social Isolation on Children & How Can You Help

Created by Nitin
Updated on Jun 30, 2020

Now new challenges for parents are – How does social isolation affect health? What does isolation do to a person? How does social isolation affect the brain? Why is isolation dangerous? Here, in this blog, we are discussing two key aspects of social distancing…

  1. How does social isolation impact your child
  2. How can you help your child adapt to it and ensure they’re well being

 

 teachers and students … new reality, parents … concern children will lose vital scholastic and social skills that simply can’t be taught through a screen.

“All of these intangible benefits I feel offset the cost to the health implications and the spread of the disease,” said Oh.

“It’s hard on them./// frustrating for parents who are often times trying to work and trying to help the kids learn,” said UCSF pediatrician Dr. Naomi Bardach.

Record-breaking numbers in new COVID-19 cases, positivity rates, and hospitalizations in many parts of California are leaving districts like Fremont with a difficult decision.

“We want to make sure that all safety considerations are taken care of before any child steps foot on campus;;;

“Our hope is when science and data allows that we will be able to ramp up in person education,”…

Pediatricians are also noticing negative side-effects of isolation and distance learning.

 

… US is “not closing” and will “never close,” even as the most recent coronavirus data from Johns Hopkins University show that at least 32 states are reporting higher rates of new cases …

Trump…. promote a plan to strongly urge a return to schools. The events were attended by a variety of stakeholders, including higher education and K-12 administrators, teachers, students, parents, health and education leaders from the state level.

School reopenings … — issues as the nation looks to adopt a sense of normalcy under the pandemic. Some schools have made multiple plans so they can stay flexible just a few weeks before the start of the 2020-21 academic year.

 

 (Reuters) – Pelosi accused Trump of “messing with” children’s health…federal guidelines on reopening schools amid the coronavirus outbreak should be mandatory.

The federal government can make the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for reopening schools mandatory,… called for a national strategy on mitigation efforts.

Trump last week attacked the CDC… for school reopening guidelines that he said were too tough, expensive and impractical.

Pelosi said. “…children to go back to school… must go back safely.”

… Betsy DeVos… refused to say if states and school districts should follow the CDC guidelines.

.. children get the virus at a far lower rate than adults and downplayed the risk of children bringing the virus home to teachers, parents, grandparents or caregivers.

… was no single solution.

 

 

A lot has happened in the US in the last week when I was putting this post together. I did some updates on July 31, 2020

Since I am no longer raising my children nor pitching in with grandchildren my next statement is so easy for me to blurt out: Are we are loving and concerned parent transferring our own fears on to our children?

“There’s no question that this has been an overall extremely stressful and in some ways a traumatizing experience for a lot of us,” said Dr. Barbara Robles-Ramamurthy, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, UT Health San Antonio.

“I think lack of information, misinformation, the uncertainty of what things will look like in the next few months in the school year is extremely stressful and difficult for families to deal with,” she added.

 

Are we as grownups reading the minds of our children? How do we know what thoughts and imaginations our children have running around in our kids’ heads? I believe we should really ask out kids what they are thinking, honestly. Or do they expect that they have to please you- repeat your own words- in order to feel heard?

 

The ‘how-do-we-go-back-to-school debate is raging, but one voice is missing …

One voice that seems noticeably absent in the dialogue is that of students themselves, says GENYOUth CEO Alexis Glick. This is why it matters.

 

 

 

Reopening Schools

Universities, colleges and schools …what to do in August and September for the beginning of the academic year. …whether to send their kids back to school, and teachers are attempting to find the best ways to keep everyone safe

Fauci called it a “critical question” and said the “default position” of the American Academy of Pediatrics and other major medical groups is to send children back to school and keep schools open as much as possible, particularly due to the “ripple effect” of negative consequences that can occur when students stay home.

… decisions must depend on the viral activity in the local community.

 Fauci ….“This will end. It doesn’t seem that way now because we’ve been immersed in it for the last 5 to 6 months,” he said. “But it will end, and we will get back to normal.”

Your mask may protect them. Their mask may protect you. says the CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci explained why the coronavirus is out of control in the United States right now, and the reasons aren’t surprising.
  • The health expert said that the US should have down entirely a few months ago, and the current surges can be explained by that failure.

… the government’s initial guidelines for the phased reopenings did not go as planned…. things can still be corrected. “We made a set of guidelines a few months ago… “We can get a handle on that. I am really confident we can if we step back.”

… the US doesn’t necessarily need to go for another lockdown to slow the spread. “But pull back a bit…. proceed in a very prudent way,” he said. Fauci added that young people are responsible for the majority of new infections in these new surges, and he called on them to recognize their “societal responsibility” in preventing the spread.

“We’ve got to convince them that just because they get infected, and the likelihood is that they’re not going to get seriously ill, doesn’t mean that their infection is not a very important part of the propagation of the outbreak,” he said.

 

The Goals of Education

 

The New Normal in the spring of 2020 kids stayed home from school while the parents became the teachers. No Non-cents Nanna

 

As frustration grows, some parents are giving up on home schooling

… challenge of managing school while working full-time is causing some parents to throw in the towel

“The thought of homeschooling makes me want to barf,” Parcak wrote on Twitter. “Our goal is to have our son come out of this happy and not be long-term emotionally scarred (lord knows life will do that anyways).”

…frustrated parents who are logging out of distance learning during the coronavirus pandemic.

“This isn’t working,” Sarah Parcak, an archeologist and University of Alabama at Birmingham professor, told TODAY Parents.

 / Source: TODAY
By Rachel Paula Abrahamson

 

The quote above was from back in April 2020 where educating your child online was not working out.

The quote below is a surprisingly another side of the coin.

 

Homeschooling becoming popular during COVID-19 as parents …

https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/parenting/…
Jul 17, 2020 · A recent survey by online educational platform Outschool shows more than 60% of parents are not comfortable sending their children back to school until a vaccine has been found. Almost 40% of…
  • Author: KABC

 

Is it safe for students to return to school in the fall? Dr. Anthony Cardillo weighs in

Before COVID-19 school-age kids took trips to the zoo. with the need to physically distance while wearing masks how do children meet psycho-social needs? No Non-cents Nanna

A major part of education in the public school system to promote “playing well with others” and exercises in following directions.

About 8 years ago I volunteered in one of the grand children’s Kindergarten class. Field trips to the zoo, the fire department, the pumpkin patch was a fun way to learn with peers.

Without a doubt, kids need to be back in school. But, with the highly infectious nature of this new coronavirus, how do you keep germs to yourself? You can’t very well, even if all children wore the best masks in the whole world. You can not play or engage with your grade school peers with a ten-foot pole.

How will my child interact with others?

The Growing Child: School-Age (6 to 12 Years)

Children progress at different rates. … different interests, abilities, and personalities…. common milestones many children reach from ages 6 to 12.

An important part of growing up is learning to interact and socialize with others. He or she will move from playing alone to having multiple friends and social groups. Friendships become more important….some of the common traits that your child may show at these ages….

Stanford Children’s Health

Read milestones of school age children HERE 

Learn more about caring for children with special health care needs during a disaster and people who are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

What You Can Do to Help Children Cope with a Disaster

The title of the reference right below indicates what doctors have to say about sending kids back to school. The five doctors in this news video said, “Yes,” they would send their own children back to school…but, wait! Hold the fort…I have to question the demographics that these doctors live with their children…

Back to school: What doctors say about children and COVID-19

Evidence suggests that children aren’t as susceptible as adults to COVID-19, but the risks aren’t the same for all young people.

By Denise Chow, Lauren Dunn and Patrick Martin

… in some circumstances, it may be important for schools to reopen … institutions have important social functions, beyond just providing an education.

“I think children have had significant social and emotional concerns from online learning over the past several months,” Lighter said. “I don’t think online learning works very well for children, especially young children, and especially children that are in poverty.”

  • Parents won’t homeschool in coronavirus pandemic because …
  • https://www.insider.com/parents-wont-homeschool-in…

    The decision to close schools to help slow the transmission of COVID-19 has forced many parents to develop homeschool programs. But many parents, including a career teacher, say they aren’t homeschooling their children because they have so many other obligations and they don’t want to stress their children any further.

     

  • How to (and How Not to) Homeschool During COVID-19 …https://breakpoint.org/how-to-and-how-not-to-homeschool-during-covid-19On the other hand, many bloggers and curriculum companies are sharing their abundance of resources for the thousands who have unexpectedly joined their homeschool ranks. It’s easy to see why some parents, flooded with so many resources and ideas, are ready to throw up their hands and give their kids over to Netflix for the next few months.

Not all homes are created equal

I do not mean this to be a racial statement. I do want to raise awareness of demographics where there are impoverished limitations for educational resources.

 

  • How parents can homeschool their kids during the COVID-19 …

    https://www.abc-7.com/story/41899165/how-parents…

    Districts across the country are closing schools due to the spread of COVID-19. How parents can homeschool their kids during the COVID-19 pandemic – ABC7 News Home

    Should our schools be doing more to support families in their role as parent educators?

    It’s not a question of ought so much as necessity.

  • Whether or not schools should be doing more to support families as educators is a moot point. Here’s the reality:
  • The only way to prevent COVID-19 from deepening inequality for an entire generation of children is to equip families to support learning at home. This is especially true in the pivotal early grades, in which children’s learning requires frequent adult facilitation.

To be sure, families living in poverty face intractable barriers that make it difficult to engage in their children’s education. The solution, however, can’t be to write parents off. Parents are, after all, the single biggest predictor of their children’s life outcomes. Low-income families need its support. No one benefits from pobrecito syndrome or the soft bigotry of low expectations.

Why doesn’t our society see in a laid off single mom the very same love, commitment, and potential we so easily recognize in her wealthier counterpart?
what parents lack, especially parents of color who live in poverty. Parental involvement is important, but how is it fair to ask these parents to do more?
Parents are the experts on their children. … uniquely positioned to read with their kids in a one-on-one setting.

I Want You to Be Safe

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

In addition to wearing a face mask, the infection control experts recommend doing the following things to slow the spread of any infection. We should have been doing these things all our lives. Better late than never to learn some new habits.

Your entire town or state may have an official order or a strong suggestion to stay-at-home or to shelter-in-place.

The whole country is supposed to be practicing physical distancing or social distancing.

Going to church or to bar indoors is very challenging to keep a distance of 6 or more feet and not spray your saliva on someone else when you sing or talk over everyone else’s loud voice.

 

Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.
www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/social-distancing.html

There will have to be a lot of thought when managers rearrange church pews, school desks, dining tables, and bars stools. I found a Social Distancing Calculator website.

  • Age-dependent effects in the transmission and control of …

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0962-9

    Jun 16, 2020 · School closures during epidemics 40, 41 and pandemics 42, 43 aim to decrease transmission among children 22 and might also have whole-population effects if children …

    • Cited by: 11
    • Publish Year: 2020
    • Author: Nicholas G Davies, Petra Klepac, Yang Liu, Kiesha Prem, Mark Jit, Rosalind M Eggo

     

  • After shocking COVID-19 figure for Florida kids, debate …

    https://www.sun-sentinel.com/coronavirus/fl-ne-coronavirus-florida-kids-health…

    2 days ago · Nationwide, about 175,000 children aged 17 and under have contracted COVID-19, about 6% of all confirmed cases in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control

Here’s the Thing About Kids

Although children are far less likely to experience serious illness from the disease, their very lack of symptoms can make them more dangerous carriers. And no one expects 7-year-olds to scrupulously observe rules on hand-washing, mask-wearing or social distancing.

“Kids are less likely to cough into their elbow or cover their mouth or socially distance without a lot of guidance,” said Dr. Ronald Ford, chief medical officer of Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood. “They’re less likely to cooperate with everything we’re asking people to do limit the spread, so they pose a pretty significant risk for transmission of the disease.”

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/coronavirus/fl-ne-coronavirus-florida-kids-health-20200719-halbi6ccdrch5l4rzu2fmhhvxm-story.html

The Value of Routines

 

Children thrive on structure.

Which of the following 3 extremes do you think your children will benefit most from the routines?

 

  1.  Send the kids back-to-school pretending that there is no possibility of an outbreak of some kind of crud
  2.  Home-school the kids with a structured plan
  3. Let them lounge while playing video games and eating chips or whatever.

Why Kids Need Routines

Why do kids need routines?
… routines give them a sense of security and help them develop self-discipline. No Non-cents Nanna

 

Humans are afraid of many things, but “the unknown” edges out everything except death and public speaking for most people.

Children’s fear of the unknown includes everything from a suspicious new vegetable to a major change in their life. For better or worse, children are confronted with change daily, which is a growth opportunity, but also stressful.

At-Home Learning Resources for the COVID-19 Outbreak

Updated: July 16, 2020
Looking for helpful and practical strategies to ensure children maintain a focus on learning during COVID-19 school closures? TeacherVision and FamilyEducation have you covered. Julie Mason – mom of 3, former classroom teacher, and Head of Content and Curriculum at TeacherVision outlines a daily plan to keep you and your kids focused, productive, and positive in this unprecedented scenario.
… working parent … time management challenges…. systems that we rely on to manage our family and work responsibilities
  • A sample daily schedule for at-home learning during
  • Daily checklists
  • Free learning resources and materials
  • Emotional support and stress management resources
  • Daily movement and activity exercises
  • Reflection resources

President Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis are pressuring schools to reopen for in-person classes. With the epidemic showing no signs of ebbing in South Florida, parents worry about the risks to their children’s health and education. Teachers wonder how school days can be organized to keep everyone safe. And the significant percentage of children carrying the virus indicates the epidemic could still get worse.

“The most important thing for all of us to do to get our kids back to school is to get this outbreak under control,” said Dr. Sonja Rasmussen, professor of pediatrics and epidemiology at the University of Florida. “To do that, we really need to start wearing masks, we need to wash our hands, we need to watch our distance.” https://www.sun-sentinel.com/coronavirus/fl-ne-coronavirus-florida-kids-health-20200719-halbi6ccdrch5l4rzu2fmhhvxm-story.html

 

We Don’t Know Where They Have Been, Do We?

Does this mean we just go back to school without adhering to some level of safety? No. Of course, precautions must be taken, but we can’t act like just because coronavirus is around, that our schools are now potential targets for the spread of this thing.

First, they’re not.

Second, I’m tired of people not thinking that airports, bars, restaurants, and other places where, you know, people gather were never areas where one could get sick until this pandemic broke out. You could always have contracted anything from these places.

Ask yourself, before COVID, did you think places where you ate cleaned those menus—and how many folks do you see not wash their hands after using the bathroom. You’d be on crack to think if they did prior to all of this hysteria. 

 

When schools reopen, will the COVID pandemic get worse?

Teachers wonder how school days can be organized to keep everyone safe. And the significant percentage of children carrying the virus indicates the epidemic could still get worse.

What we know about coronavirus risks to school age children

https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/10/health/coronavirus…

Jul 10, 2020 · As coronavirus cases spike nationwide, most parents are wondering whether it’s safe to send their children back to school. But with most of the research and testing geared toward adults, the

… children not the only concern when schools reopen.
… nearly a third of teachers nationwide over age 50, they are more vulnerable to fatal infections.
Asymptomatic transmission — teachers can then pass the disease to more vulnerable people. A surge in schools can translate into a broader uptick a few weeks later.
“As any parent knows, children are little disease vectors. We don’t know precisely how effective children are at passing on the virus that causes Covid-19, but it’s a big concern,” … We should not be lulled into thinking children are immune to Covid-19.”

Not to Scare You, but…

 

Marta Gaglia and Seema Lakdawala, The Conversation

Complicating the picture further, other studies found that some asymptomatic patients had similar viral loads to patients with COVID-19 symptoms. … the viral load alone is not a clear predictor of disease outcome.

… whether getting a higher virus dose upon infection—… prolonged exposure to an infected person, like health care workers’ experience— more severe disease. … do not know whether this is the case.

 

Does high viral load increase ability to pass the virus to others?

… the more virus you have in your airways, the more you will release when you exhale or cough…

Multiple studies have reported that patients have the highest viral load of the coronavirus at the time they are diagnosed.

… patients transmit COVID-19 more effectively at the beginning of their illness, or even before they know they are sick. This is bad news.

I have some reservations about the World Health Organization WHO tends to over-catastrophize. But, I think fair-is-fair when more credible sources are cited in a debate.
Now don’t hold your breath on this as the Final Answer. Scientists are learning more about COVID-19 nearly every day. therefore the best available information on this novel virus is most likely outdated by the time we read it.
Tip: look for the most recent date on SARS-CoV-2 for the most current information as presumed facts are changing to more accurate and definite facts.

Covid is airborne. What does it mean? WHO chief scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan explains

New DelhiJuly 9, 2020 UPDATED: July 9, 2020 09:55 IST

… coronavirus can survive in the air for some times in tiny droplets and get transmitted,… in a very limited environment.

… WHO’s ,,, Covid-19 is airborne or not… the virus can survive in the air and transmit, but in a very limited environment.

… when we speak, shout, sing or even breathe, there are a lot of droplets that come out of our mouth… different sizes…. larger droplets fall on to the ground within 1-2 meters. … emphasis on maintaining distance so that these droplets can be prevented from directly transmitting from one person to another.

… also smaller droplets… aerosols … small in size… could remain in the air for 10-15 minutes after coming out from someone’s mouth… take a little longer to settle on the ground….can be moved around by gusts of winds etc…. particles could be inhaled by other people who are in the vicinity… transmission of Covid-19 can be called airborne transmission…

… this form of airborne transmission is very different from airborne transmission of viruses like measles, “which are truly airborne in the sense that they spread primarily in the air”.

… distinction between the two types of airborne transmissions should be kept in mind…

 

“If you enter that space and breathe that air, you may get infected because the tiny droplets containing the virus are still in the air…

… WHO … Covid-19 is primarily transmitted from person-to-person through small droplets.. in a limited environment that there could be an airborne transmission…

… airborne transmission occurs in “special situations”. … If truly airborne like measles, in the sense that it was everywhere, all of us would have been infected by now,” …

She added that majority of the transmission occurs from droplets and if we can control that through distancing and other means, we can prevent most Covid-19 cases.

… emerging evidence of the airborne spread of Covid-19.

 

Home-Schooling and more…

Five experts chat about money: community: health and education on a 30-minute video. This

I got this great information thru’ the Iowa City Press-Citizen as I live in IOWA. The five e experts are chatting form different states.

Please HERE to read and listen to this valuable video then share it with other families with children.

“Appeal to the highest authority.”

Thinking of home schooling during the pandemic? Here’s what you need to know

As the state continues to report hundreds of new cases of coronavirus each day, Iowa school districts are still deciding if and how schools can safely reopen next month. Some families, like the Deans, are choosing to avoid this uncertainty altogether by home schooling their children instead.

If you and your family are considering home school for the upcoming year, here’s some guidance as you explore the various options.

Learn more:‘Surge in enrollment’ for home schooling as Iowa families seek to limit exposure to coronavirus

1. Iowa makes it relatively easy for families to home-school

Iowa has one of the most flexible home schooling climates in the country, says Bill Gustoff, legal counsel and legislative liaison for the nonprofit Homeschool Iowa. The group represents several thousand families and offers tips on how families can switch to home schooling.

2. Some districts provide home schooling resources for families

3. ‘Home schooling’ doesn’t have to equal ‘isolation’

https://www.press-citizen.com/story/news/education/2020/07/26/what-to-know-more-iowa-families-home-school-kids-reduce-coronavirus-exposure-school-districts/5509500002/

Age-dependent effects in the transmission and control of COVID-19 epidemics

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic … low proportion of cases among children1,2,3,4. Age disparities … could be explained by children having lower susceptibility to infection, lower propensity to show clinical symptoms or both. …epidemic data from China, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Canada and South Korea. …

… In countries with younger population structures—such as many low-income countries—the expected per capita incidence of clinical cases would be lower than in countries with older population … comorbidities in low-income countries will also influence disease severity. Without effective control measures, regions with older populations .. disproportionally more cases of COVID-19… in the later stages of an unmitigated epidemic.

Main

 Understanding the role of age in transmission and disease severity is critical for determining the likely impact of social-distancing interventions on SARS-CoV-2 transmission8, especially those aimed at schools, and for estimating the expected global disease burden.

First, age-varying susceptibility to infection by SARS-CoV-2,… children are less susceptible than adults to becoming infected on contact with an infectious person… evidence for decreased susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 in children… mixed15,16, … could result in lower transmission in the population overall.

Second, children could experience mild or no symptoms on infection more frequently than adults.

Clinical cases with noticeable symptoms…

An infection that does not result in a clinical case may be truly asymptomatic, or may be paucisymptomatic— mild symptoms … may not be noticed or reported … ‘subclinical infections’…more likely to remain undetected —  children with subclinical symptoms could still be capable of transmitting the virus to others, potentially at lower rates than fully symptomatic individuals…

Third,… different ages, and setting-specific differences in age distribution… Children tend to make more social contacts than adults21 should contribute more to transmission than adults22,23

The higher contact rates in children are why school closures are considered a key intervention for epidemics of respiratory infections22, but the impact of school closure depends on the role of children in transmission. .

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0962-9

SAN FRANCISCO (CBSLA) — A new study from the University of California San Francisco suggests that masks do protect the wearer from contracting COVID-19.

“This one tiny thing could get us through the entire pandemic, including possibly getting all of us immune so we can get through this faster,” said Dr. Monica Gandhi, the UCSF infectious disease doctor who led the study.

… new research shows the severity of a person’s COVID-19 symptoms can depend on how much of the virus enters the body.

“How much virus you get in is probably one of the most important determinants of how sick you get,” she said. “By having a mask over your face, it filters out the majority of viral particles…. even if you do get exposed to COVID… you are going to get very little virus in, and if you do get COVID, you’ll get less sick.”

Despite its robust health system, South Korea struggled to respond appropriately to the 2015 outbreak of MERS, with nearly 17,000 suspected cases and 38 deaths.

… six months of that outbreak, Koreans lived in fear… government lost an estimated US$2.6 billion in tourism revenue while spending.. US$1 billion on diagnosis, treatment, and other response activities.

After MERS… series of policy changes to improve pandemic preparedness and response.

COVID-19 …l memory of MERS inspired an early, aggressive government response — and a willingness among people to wear masks, cooperate with contract tracers… listen to public health officials.

… wearing a mask in public spaces, already common because of air pollution… social norm early in the pandemic.

… recent poll … more people adhered to public prevention protocols during the COVID-19 outbreak than during the MERS outbreak.

https://ourworldindata.org/covid-exemplar-south-korea

Health Conditions

 

 U.S. has more than 3,000 counties, and some have few coronavirus cases… others have a high enough number of cases …. not restarting school in person or bringing students back /// protects both students and teachers.

“That might be simple logistic things” such as spacing desks, alternating schedules to clean classes and teaching outside, he said. “There are creative ways of doing that.”

“… risk of infection and transmission is lower in younger children”, Fauci called the claims “anecdotal” … not enough data to know for sure. … the way infection occurs between children and family members …how underlying conditions such as asthma and allergies … don’t yet have an answer.

https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/20200718/fauci-interivew-webmd?ecd=wnl_spr_072020&ctr=wnl-spr-072020_nsl-LeadModule_cta&mb=6RJlOxj9pzANxd67yABf3EtjebG3a4%2fi7DQrX%2fGDHrU%3d

A World Disconnected

What IF your home is not connected to the internet? And what if you are, but you can’t afford to buy a printer?

Can you get your kids to the library…oh wait…our city’s library is closed!

 

7 million school-age children that lived in households without home Internet service in 2017. These children were also less likely than their peers to use the Internet from other locations. No Non-cents Nanna

… y 7 million school-age children that lived in households without home Internet service in 2017. … were also less likely than their peers to use the Internet from other locations.

… 16 percent (children in offline households,) went online while at school… only 5 percent used the Internet from a library or community center, compared with 60 percent and 20 percent of children with home Internet service, respectively.

… only 20 percent of school-age children living in offline households used the Internet at all… leaving nearly 6 million of the 7 million children even less connected as schools increasingly rely upon online resources for communication with parents and instruction.

… children use home Internet connections to complete school assignments…. Children who can’t get online are at risk of missing …education. That danger… among those communities that have historically faced increased challenges.

Children in households without home Internet service tend to have lower family incomes than their peers. …

There are also disparities in children’s access to the Internet… race and population density.

https://www.ntia.doc.gov/blog/2018/digital-divide-among-school-age-children-narrows-millions-still-lack-internet-connections

Where is the World Are Kids Back in School?

Australia

Students head back to school amid coronavirus nerves

By Jordan Baker

Some principals said they were nervous students’ return would exacerbate COVID-19 outbreaks in south-west Sydney, particularly after a cluster at Al-Taqwa College in Melbourne led to 173 cases. “We’re very confident in the social distancing and hygiene measures that have been put in place,” she said.

Dr Chant urged parents to maintain a safe physical distance when dropping off and picking up their children, and said while masks were a personal decision for families, children often did not use them properly, which could lead to further risk.

  • 5 Ways You Can Help Your Kids Feel Safe in an Unsafe World …

    https://ccy.jfcs.org/5-ways-can-help-kids-feel-safe-unsafe-world

    Jan 19, 2017 · Here are some tips on how to help kids feel safe: Maintain structure and routineKids feel safe when their environment is structured and they know what is happening next. This is most important when they are feeling stressed or overwhelmed.

  • Being a Helper: Supporting Children to Feel Safe and …

    https://www.naeyc.org/resources/pubs/tyc/feb2018/…

    Children need constant reassurance that they are safe and secure. Share with families the symptoms they should be looking for that indicate their child is stressed or anxious. Point out that regressive behaviors like thumb-sucking and bed-wetting are normal and temporary.

     

     

Continue reading more of the COVID-19 gleanings…

More COVID-19 series posts on No Non-cents Nanna

 

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