Covid already...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Mr.history, Jul 29, 2021.

  1. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    Jul 29, 2021

    We started preplanning this week and our students start class Monday.
    We had a teacher who taught multiple grade levels test positive today which means that all the teachers she planned with have to be quarantined. We are starting the first day of school with 8 teachers in quarantine for 2 weeks. I had high hopes for the school year but we are starting the way we ended.

    I'm vaccinated, but now I'm debating whether to wear a mask now. We were required to last year but now they are optional. It sucks wearing them all day but I don't really want to miss 2 weeks every time I get contact traced. How are your schools going to handle covid this year?
     
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  3. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Jul 30, 2021

    My state just announced today all students k-12 will be required to wear masks when school starts back up. I am curious how many other states will do so. Good luck.
     
  4. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Jul 30, 2021

    Same here.

    We were told last spring to expect "normal school with masks" this school year. No quarantines, no cohorting. Even last spring, vaccinated teachers didn't have to quarantine, so the scenario in the OP wouldn't have happened. In late June, they sent out a notice that masks would also not be required and I was looking forward to finally having a "normal" year. The only protocol that was supposed to continue was increased cleaning and hand washing.

    Well, that seems like it won't be happening now. Districts are scrambling to come up with plans now that health department recommendations have changed. One nearby district just sent out a notice that they will still NOT be requiring masks. No one else has said anything. My district sent out an email saying that they want to be "as close to normal as possible" but will "also follow (local health dept.) guidance." That local guidance now calls for masks. My district won't release a plan until the teacher's first day :rolleyes: and it seems most other districts are trying to bide their time as well.

    My guess is that they'll go back to implementing the measures they think are more feasible/won't have as significant of an impact on students being able to "learn normally." So I suspect we'll go back to doing temperature/symptom checks, increased cleaning, and masks for all. No cohorting and no quarantining if they can get away with it, because those had the biggest impacts on learning.

    I'm extremely frustrated with the whole thing. We kept being told that we were just waiting for the vaccine. The vaccine is here and we're still doing all of this crap? Now it's, "well, just until kids can get vaccinated too." I'm sorry, but I don't believe it. After the vaccine becomes available to kids people will be arguing that many of them aren't getting it and it's not their fault because their parents have to take them, and will be wanting to do masks and other protocols forever. There will also always be new variants. The teen vaccination rate is abysmal. Imagine how much lower it will be for young children. I've even heard educated coworkers, who were clamoring to get the vaccine for themselves, say they're not sure it's worth it for their child to get vaccinated when they become eligible due to various conspiracy theories like the infertility thing.
     
  5. whizkid

    whizkid Groupie

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  6. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Jul 30, 2021

    Sadly, anyone who thought that this coming school would be "normal" will find themselves sadly mistaken. Masks are being pushed again even for vaccinated individuals, and based on the data coming out about the variants, I am certain the push is warranted. Admittedly, I am one of those who believes in vaccination, and I have watched the virus continually changing, as it is spread throughout the world. I have been vaccinated by two different vaccines, aware that my age makes me more vulnerable. Already I am considering what the protocols will be to add a "booster" shot to the regimen, since I am still suffering some of the side effects of having had Covid early last year. My belief, based on how my extended family, living in several different states behaves, is that many parents will not vaccinate their children because they don't like to be told what to do - I will never understand those who refuse the vaccines simply because they don't like being told to vaccinate to attend school, but the outcomes of this "you can't make me do this" actions will almost certainly be a part of the problem, not a part of any solution.
     
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  7. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    Jul 30, 2021

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  8. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Jul 30, 2021

    I don't think virtual will happen either. We were in person (fully, not hybrid) for all of last school year with the exception of Nov-Dec. My district is still offering a virtual option, but kids aren't allowed to switch back and forth like they were last year. I have wondered if more families than originally anticipated will sign up for that virtual option with all of the recent news. I mean, from the perspective of a child too young to be vaccinated, things aren't really that different than they were this time last year. In fact, there are more covid cases than there were this time last year. The teacher is likely vaccinated, but that's only one person in the room. So if parents were worried enough to stick with virtual last year, I could easily see them making the same choice this year.
     
  9. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    Jul 30, 2021

    We are requiring masks for everyone, but those vaccinated don’t have to quarantine if exposed. We don’t have a virtual option unless students have a medical excuse. We don’t have a hybrid plan in place.
     
  10. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Jul 30, 2021

    Definitely worth a look and a quick read:
    https://www.livescience.com/internal-cdc-document-covid-delta-variant.html
    If current numbers are correct, even previously vaccinated individuals will be vulnerable to infection with the Delta variant, although not likely to become sick enough to warrant hospitalization. Then the news gets scarier - this vaccinated individual who may become barely sick will shed enough of the virus to create multiple cases. So a variant that sheds that much virus is certain to infect a lot of people, either those too young to vaccinate, or those who simply refuse to vaccinate. The vaccinated people who contract the variant will shed the virus at very high rates. We may feel like we have had it with Covid, but the Covid virus is apparently not finished with us. I believe the hope had been that people would flock towards the vaccine, and this type of variant might not emerge, but that hasn't been the case. Not sure what will be done in this scenario, but pretty sure that mandated masks will remain in lots of locations. I take comfort in believing that my vaccinations should keep me out of the hospital, but I worry that this virus is finding so many unvaccinated victims to travel through that some of these variants can be considered super-bugs as far as transmission is concerned. I know that if Pfizer suggests a booster shot at the end of August, I will roll up my sleeve again, willingly.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2021
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  11. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Jul 31, 2021

    I’m in Arkansas, a definite hot spot at the moment. Our governor just called for a special legislative session to try to get them to amend the mask mandate ban to allow schools to mandate masks. My district is bringing back the virtual option for next year (they literally decided this last week— school starts August 16) because currently we cannot require masks. Plans are changing daily at the moment.

    Personally, even though I’m vaccinated, I am all for bringing back masks. The kids adapted well to them last year. Not only am I in an elementary building where no children will be vaccinated, but I have an elementary aged daughter who is high risk for complications should she contract Covid. The Delta carpenter is no joke. My state made national news because of the number of kids hospitalized from Covid, some on a ventilator. It’s just not worth the risk.
     
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  12. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    Jul 31, 2021

    I think we will be in person and masks will be required. Most of the district was virtual for all of last year. There was partial reopening for elementary schools in April, and that turned into hybrid, which was very difficult for the teachers. I don't think there will be any hybrid teaching this year. Families are supposed to have a choice between virtual and in-person, but I haven't heard of them being asked yet. (School starts in 2 weeks) Online will be taught by online only teachers, and some job postings have been reported. A nearby district is outsourcing their online teaching, which reminds me of some of the concerns Damien had posted about. I will get a booster when/if recommended. I teach high school and I think a lot of my students and almost all my colleagues have been vaccinated.
     
  13. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Connoisseur

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    Our district was in person all year with the exception of about 2 weeks. At 1st they said they'd close IF they got in the "red zone." Then they changed their minds and kept schools open. Teachers did not quarantine when exposed from what I heard. Cases were kept hush-hush. Often though, you'd hear it through the grape vine outside of school.
    There were no consequences for kids who wore masks under their noses or chins. It was up to the teacher to convince their kids the importance of caution b/c they got no support from admin or most parents. Kids are allowed to sign up for an online home school type program or in person here. Most parents are anti maskers and anti vaxxers here.
    At the end of last year, they announced masks would not be required this year. School will start soon and we are in a red zone again. The hospitals are saying it is worse now than last year. I have a feeling this year will be like last year. I am so thankful I was able to retire! :)
     
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  14. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Jul 31, 2021

    That’s all so sad. Good luck.
     
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  15. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Connoisseur

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    It is for sure especially for some of the older teachers who need to put in a few more years to retire. I feel very blessed to have been able to retire a bit early. ( I started young and started saving about 8 yrs ago.) I am no longer the Tired Teacher. I wish I could change my name on here....lol
     
  16. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Aug 1, 2021

    I think it's unnecessary for all to mask up. The decorative masks and the medical masks do not filter all incoming particles. When a kid barfed or farted in class, we could all smell it. But they are effective at reducing outgoing particles; direct spray from mouths and noses. Masks also cut down on hands in mouth to wiggle teeth and fingers out of noses. So like a box of Kleenex, I'm going to request a box of masks from now on. When the kiddies start coughing, sneezing, or picking, "Here's your mask."
     
  17. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    I wore a KN95 mask like this one all year:
    https://bonafidemasks.com/powecom/

    It was the first year teaching that I didn't get sick a single time. I always get strep, bronchitis, or an ear infection the first week or second week of school. Only downside is that they are hot.
     
  18. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Connoisseur

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    Almost everyone I know who wore masks did not get the usual colds, sinus issues, or bronchitis problems this year either. We were talking about what a healthy year it had been for a lot of teachers here. ( Covid did hit some though. Just not that group.)
     
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  19. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Aug 2, 2021

    I typically get a few sinus infections each school year, and I didn't get any last year. That was a silver lining, but personally I'd 100x rather be uncomfortable for a few days with a sinus infection or cold than be uncomfortable all day every day in a mask.
     
  20. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

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    Aug 3, 2021

    In my district in Texas, masks are encouraged but not required for anyone. We have a very low number of cases in our county right now. (2 reported cases) People are continuing their lives without too much worry or fear. A little less than 50% of the county is vaccinated. At one point last year we had an extremely high rate of infection. We had about 15 employees of the school all total and maybe 20 kids get covid. The rest was community members. The nursing home and the prison were hit extremely hard. We are a town of about 10,000.
     
  21. whizkid

    whizkid Groupie

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    Aug 10, 2021

    We're keeping our cases on the "down low".
     
  22. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Connoisseur

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    Aug 11, 2021

    That is BS and so wrong! That is 1 thing about school systems that I am glad to be done with! Secrets using confidentiality as the excuse! I love being able to say whatever the heck I want now w/ no fear of reprisals!
     

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