Trying to teach kids remotely is a bad idea. As parents, we know that, and science agrees – kids learn better in person, and the risk of COVID infection is extremely low. For reference, here are just some of the articles you can use when confronted with overzealous and power-hungry administrators who want to shut down your school.
December 7, 2020 – UNICEF
COVID-19: UNICEF warns of continued damage to learning and well-being as number of children affected by school closures soars again
UNICEF calls on governments to prioritize the reopening of schools, take all actions possible to make classrooms as safe as possible and avoid nationwide school closures
“In spite of everything we have learned about COVID-19, the role of schools in community transmission, and the steps we can take to keep children safe at school, we are moving in the wrong direction—and doing so very quickly,” said Robert Jenkins, UNICEF Global Chief of Education. “Evidence shows that schools are not the main drivers of this pandemic. Yet, we are seeing an alarming trend whereby governments are once again closing down schools as a first recourse rather than a last resort.
December 29, 2020 – Chicago Sun Times
As medical doctors, we believe reopening Chicago’s schools is essential and safe
The educational, psychological and financial hardships of remote learning have had serious consequences for our children and their families, and those children with educational or behavioral challenges have been even more seriously affected. We cannot understate the serious psychological harm that prolonged virtual school has had on many children. We are seeing an epidemic of serious psychological illness that has reached a crisis point.
However, we have learned a lot over the last 10 months about children safely returning to the classroom. For example, we have discovered that in-school spread of COVID-19 is rare when proper precautions are taken. Furthermore, we know now that children, and especially young children of elementary school age, are much less likely to transmit infection to adults than the other way around.
October 21, 2020 – NPR
Are The Risks Of Reopening Schools Exaggerated?
Despite widespread concerns, two new international studies show no consistent relationship between in-person K-12 schooling and the spread of the coronavirus. And a third study from the United States shows no elevated risk to childcare workers who stayed on the job.
Nowhere, the research found, was there a spike that coincided with reopening: “What we found is that the school [being opened] makes absolutely no difference,” Álvarez told NPR.
November 5, 2020 – Association of American Medical Colleges
Kids, school, and COVID-19: What we know — and what we don’t
An emerging body of evidence suggests that young children do not spread the coronavirus easily.
When researchers at Duke University School of Medicine asked selected parents in the Raleigh-Durham metropolitan area to track symptoms in children who tested positive for the coronavirus early in the pandemic, among the notable answers was this: After 28 days, more than one-third of the 6- to 13-year-olds had shown no symptoms at all.
“The fear that you’d have one infected kid come to school, and then you’d have many other kids and teachers and relatives [at home] get infected — that hasn’t happened.”
December 4, 2020 – San Francisco Chronicle
Pediatricians to San Francisco: Children are suffering, so reopen schools
Distance learning is wholly inadequate to meet the educational needs of elementary age children, and this is exacerbated for children living in poverty.
In addition, research shows that opening elementary schools does not drive viral spread in communities as long as schools adhere to public health guidelines. For this reason, many European countries have kept schools open despite having significantly higher case counts than we have in San Francisco… Ongoing school closures are creating a public health crisis of unprecedented proportions for children.
November 30, 2020 – Fox News
Fauci admits what we all knew months ago — schools must stay open
Sixty million American children have been languishing in their rooms since spring, sitting in front of screens, learning nothing, isolated from human contact, in many cases driven to mental illness — and there was no reason for any of that. The experts were wrong. They had no idea what they were doing. But the most amazing part is that they knew they were wrong when they did it, but they kept lying about it, even as American children began to kill themselves.
FAUCI: Close the bars and keep the schools open, is what we really say. Obviously, you don’t have one size fits all. But as I said in the past … the default position should be to try as best as possible, within reason, to keep the children in school or to get them back to school. If you look at the data, the spread among children and from children is not really very big at all, not like one would have suspected.
December 19, 2020 – The Atlantic
Why British Kids Went Back to School, and American Kids Did Not
Dragging pandemic policy into the culture war has been a disaster for the U.S., particularly its children.
Evidence is mounting that school closures have been bad for children. A McKinsey study of K–5 students from the U.S. found that even students who managed to get back into the classroom by mid-October had lost the equivalent of three months of math learning and one and a half months of reading.
Higher learning loss will occur among poorer children, who are less likely to have the computers, space, quiet, and good internet connections required to make remote learning work. In the U.S., pupils of color will suffer particularly: They are more likely to be poor, and the schools they attend are less likely to offer the option of in-person instruction.
December 2, 2020 – The American Spectator
Liberals Suddenly Discover Science Shows Schools Are Safe
Now that the election is over, liberal mayors and governors are announcing that science shows it’s safe to reopen schools.
The CDC, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and even the New York Times editorial board recommended opening schools before this school year began. Yet it took until now — when parental outrage finally superseded the power of teachers’ unions and Joe Biden was elected president — for liberal public officials to begin to “figure out” it’s safe to reopen schools.
Teachers4OpenSchools – Web Resource
We are teachers from across the United States who believe in a safe reopening for all schools now
November 30, 2020 – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Online education often comes nowhere near what’s offered in classroom
“The highest quality learning requires students to interact with their teacher and other students,” said Jennifer Darling-Aduana, an assistant professor in the College of Education & Human Development at Georgia State University
“Everybody knows that for the elementary level, online is not the best option,” said Hayley Greene, the Bulloch schools spokeswoman.
July 10, 2020 – American Academy of Pediatrics
Pediatricians, Educators and Superintendents Urge a Safe Return to School This Fall
“We recognize that children learn best when physically present in the classroom. But children get much more than academics at school. They also learn social and emotional skills at school, get healthy meals and exercise, mental health support and other services that cannot be easily replicated online. Schools also play a critical role in addressing racial and social inequity. Our nation’s response to COVID-19 has laid bare inequities and consequences for children that must be addressed. This pandemic is especially hard on families who rely on school lunches, have children with disabilities, or lack access to Internet or health care.
December 30, 2020 – CDC
Operating schools during COVID-19: CDC’s Considerations
As communities in the United States consider how to safely re-open K-12 school buildings and in-person services, CDC offers updated considerations for mitigation strategies that K-12 school administrators can use to help protect students, teachers, and staff and slow the spread of COVID-19.
In general, children with COVID-19 are less likely to have severe symptoms than adults or experience an asymptomatic infection – meaning they do not have any signs or symptoms of disease. Analysis of pediatric COVID-19 hospitalization data from 14 states from early March to late July 2020 found the cumulative rate of COVID-19–associated hospitalization among children was over 20 times lower compared to adults (8.0 versus 164.5 per 100,000 population)
To be sure, the best available evidence from countries that have reopened schools indicates that COVID-19 poses low risks to school-aged children