Time for hybrid schooling

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es daly

Oct 12, 2020, 9:56:11 PM10/12/20
to public....@laschools.net
At the last discussion for hybrid schooling LAPS delayed the start of hybrid schooling for elementary students until October 19th.  The reason given was LAPS had received new guidance from the PED.  By now that guidance has been evaluated and no new guidance , that has yet to be evaluated, has been issued.  Los Alamos is blessed that we are “green” from a Covid community spread point of view.  We are in the optimum position to implement hybrid learning and the start to return all students to school. Even the implementation of small groups with masking, spacing, and cleaning  has not shown an increase in Covid rates. 

Data drives all decisions, so I encourage you to read the following articles listed at the end of my email.  They all suggest that reopening with appropriate precautions, such as masks, spacing, cleaning, temperature checks,  do not significantly increase COVID cases.  Although cases may not be zero, and zero is unrealistic, they are in fact less than that expected by community spread.  For those who point to the recent increases in COVID cases those cases are in the 20 to 29  age group, in Bernalillo and Dona Ana counties.   That age group is not typical  of our students or teachers nor is Los Alamos a major city or near a major city.  Both of those factors help keep our Covid  numbers low. 

If LAPS decides not to go to hybrid for elementary because some people  want a vaccine available be aware that it will be awhile.  Teachers will not be first  for a vaccine.  Priority extends to health care workers, emergency response people, nursing home occupants, and others long before teachers would come into the queue.  A vaccine for children has not even started development for FDA approval.  Given the reluctance by many to vaccination and supply shortages it could be more than a year before “herd immunity” is achieved,  I am concerned that even more children will be withdrawn from the public school system during this time.  The more families that withdraw children and pursue homeschooling  the less secure our public school system becomes.  I request you open the schools in the hybrid model as a path forward to full reopening of the schools. 

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