I disagree with Ed Dornlas (Tuesday letter to the Review-Journal) correlating the distance learning decision by the Clark County School District with “systemic racism.” The district is providing resources to all communities. Racism is real, but not in this situation. This is a difficult decision with no perfect solution.
With COVID-19 cases rising at an even higher level than when the schools were originally closed, it is inappropriate and irresponsible to reopen them. The argument that COVID-19 is a serious threat only to the elderly and medically compromised is unrealistic. The virus has impacted all ages and in varying degrees. Even if children are less likely to get seriously ill, it is irrelevant because some will — and some will even die. No parent wants their child to be the exception.
Because a lack of understanding with regard to coronavirus transmission rates in children still exists, and without valid expert agreement regarding the spread of COVID-19, it is difficult to determine the risk to all those involved with in-person school attendance. The potential for transmission to teachers, administrators, office workers, custodians, bus drivers, school police, parents, grandparents and others, including more vulnerable siblings, is likely.
Masks and social distancing do help. However, even many adults have difficulty with following these directives properly. So expecting children to keep their masks on properly and social distance is wishful thinking. It will be an unsuccessful uphill battle and an environment not conducive to anyone learning. Therefore, opting for distance education is appropriate at this time.