(WSYM) — The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended that all students wear masks while in school, regardless of vaccination status. But some states have either blocked mask mandates or limited local schools’ abilities to implement them.
You know I’m a parent and have kids in school. And when it comes to this incredibly contagious coronavirus, I believe it’s better to err on the side of caution. So I one hundred percent support the American Academy of Pediatrics. They’re a national group that is dedicated to the health and well-being of children.
Now I find it unfortunate that at least 9 states – including Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas - have taken it upon themselves to prohibit mask mandates. This is not only in conflict with the AAP but also with the CDC’s guidance regarding masks in schools.
Fortunately for us here in Michigan, there’s no law that prohibits masks in schools. That decision has actually been left to individual school districts.
I agree, there is some confusion. I’m actually getting peppered with questions by some of my patients who are parents and grandparents.
Because the AAP recommends universal mask wearing for everyone over the age of 2 in school settings. While the CDC says that anyone who is fully vaccinated does not need to wear facial coverings.
What the CDC is doing, is allowing room for cities, local agencies, and school districts to decide what’s best – based on the COVID-19 situation in the surrounding communities. Whereas the AAP feels that it’s too much for schools to police who is vaccinated and who is not. And that there are too many students who can’t get vaccinated because they’re not yet eligible.
That gives the virus plenty of opportunities to spread in schools. And unfortunately, we're already seeing an increase in COVID cases among kids. And the school year hasn't even started yet.
Cases have almost doubled, jumping to over 23,500 cases between July 8th and July 15th.
In my opinion, the best thing we can do for our kids right now is for people aged 12 and over to get vaccinated. If you can get vaccinated, then please do. That will lower community spread and help protect our kids when school resumes.