The student news site of Shawnee Mission West High School

Covid-19 Concerns

Flaws behind schools' handling of the ongoing pandemic.

October 7, 2021

Covid-19+Concerns

 As schools across the country are back in session full-time for the first time in almost two years, my level of concern on how schools across the nation are handling the pandemic is rising. More specifically, public schools in Kansas and their ways of following the CDC guidelines. masks below the nose, masks not being required at all in some areas, hallways absolutely flooded, schools are becoming breeding ground for the deadly virus, and with the new delta variant spreading like wildfire, this is dangerous.

 You would think that this would only make large schools all the more safe but we are dusting all of this information under the rug, just like this country has been doing since the virus has been introduced to America. 

 As the mask mandate was lifted throughout the country due to the number of people with the vaccine, the virus has put the country back into a state where hospitals are as overflooded with sick, dying people, just as was when Covid-19 was first introduced to the states.

 Although I am glad many people are taking the opportunity to get vaccinated, the vaccine is not the cure to Covid 19, especially when you and others around you aren’t following any of the public safety protocols. Without following safety procedures such as wearing a mask, washing your hands, and even doing the bare minimum, social distancing, how safe are you really keeping yourself and others, even with the vaccine? 

While a high percentage of the American population is vaccinated, there’s still a very high percentage that is not, and not all of those are crazy, anti-vax, conspiracy theorists you see all over the internet. 

 A lot simply aren’t vaccinated because of their age. You have to at least be 12 years of age or older in most states in order to qualify for the Covid vaccine. For others, health risks and concerns such as allergies to the ingredients in the vaccine are what is preventing them from getting it and a lot of people just want more information and data on how and if the vaccine will have any negative effects on us long term.

 Yes, the vaccine lowers your chance of contracting Covid, you can still get it and not even know because one of the main purposes of the vaccine was to lower one’s chances of getting hospitalized if testing positive for the virus. Symptoms could just feel like a common cold, and you could spread it to anyone. This is why following the original CDC safety guidelines, especially in schools, is so important. The new Delta variant is mainly harming and hospitalizing children and teens. I feel as if schools all throughout Kansas aren’t doing anything at all to stop the spread. God forbid we have another mass outbreak because the Kansas state legislature has made it so that schools can no longer do more than 40 hours of online school this year. 

 If the state is so set on having students go to school in person for the full year, the bare minimum these districts can do is give families the option on whether or not they’d like to do school virtually or physically. We have done it before, for almost half a year in some schools, there is no excuse as to why they can’t do it again.

 In my opinion, schools aren’t even doing below the bare minimum in order to keep the spread under control. Aside from masks not being required in some schools throughout the state, those with mask requirements aren’t doing everything they can to make sure students, and even teachers are wearing their masks properly, although wearing a mask correctly should be a more simple task than what the public is making it out to be. Masks are borderline pointless if they are not covering both your nose and mouth.

 If schools are struggling to have students and staff follow proper CDC guidelines, then proper discipline should be taken into consideration. If I can get in trouble for having three tardies in a whole school year, I don’t see why punishment towards someone putting hundreds of people’s health in danger is invalid.

 Schools need to do better, and vaccinated or not, masks are important. Wearing your mask correctly is the only way wearing the masks will actually be effective.

 

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