To the editor:
One respondent’s conclusion concerning schools opening is seriously flawed.
First, the statistics cited from Florida are woefully inaccurate. Florida counts every negative test in their number used to calculate their total test base. There are hundreds if not thousands of people in the state subject to continuous testing.
Health-care workers, first responders, etc., are repeatedly tested and when negative, over and over, they add to that base number. When positive they are, of course, counted once. When 10 workers are tested 10 times and five test positive, that percentage is reported as 5 percent, (5 out of 100.) It would be 50 percent, 5 out of 10 if those people were tested just once. This dramatically skews the number.
His second point is equally flawed. Children’s deaths from suicide, homicide, accidents, etc. are irrelevant. None of those deaths is a result of gathering in large groups or not social distancing. Nor can any of these infect family members or the public.
Lastly, the low incidence of children contracting and getting seriously ill from COVID-19 is based on the past four months when nearly all schools have been closed. Can we guarantee the same results if they reopen?
It is a fact that children can and do become carriers and can and do make others ill. Let us think of all the people involved in these decisions before deciding for them.
Yes, we need to take the statistics quoted daily in proper perspective, not be overwhelmed with fear based on the news. We must also pay attention to the facts and use applicable comparisons before jumping to conclusions based on flawed data.
Bottom line: Schools do need to and should eventually reopen, but only when the proper precautions can be guaranteed and put in place. We should not gamble with the lives of our teachers, administrators, and our children.