Headline RoundupAugust 27th, 2021

Perspectives: Schools, Families Face Challenging Return to the Classroom

Summary from the AllSides News Team

As students and faculty return to schools, concerns about COVID-19, mask mandates and the pandemic's psychological impact on children are major points of discussion. Fifteen states and Puerto Rico have enacted mask mandates for schools; eight states have outlawed school mask mandates, though some school districts in those states have mandated masks anyway. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, child COVID-19 cases have increased four-fold over the past month, from roughly 38,000 cases per week at the end of July to 180,000 this past week. Healthy children are unlikely to suffer serious complications from COVID-19, and are far less likely to die from COVID-19 than other age groups.

Left-rated voices have often focused more on safety concerns for students and faculty, framed in the context of the COVID-19 Delta variant and a rising number of children who've contracted COVID-19. Right-rated voices often concentrated on inconsistent or purportedly overbearing COVID-19 guidance from schools, teachers' unions and public health officials; many called for an end to mandating masks for young students, citing data that suggests COVID-19 transmission rates in schools are typically much lower than rates in the surrounding communities. Opinions from across the spectrum have also highlighted remote learning's negative impacts on kids, and how the coming school year may be instrumental in restoring normality for young students.

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