With Covid Cases On the Rise, States are Shutting Down

Michigan recently began a temporary 3-week shut down, and New York is preparing a shut down of public schools as the COVID cases are on the rise as economic activity begins in times for the holiday season.

As more of the population become exposed to the coronavirus, even small gatherings are becoming dangerous. Virginia’s governor has decreased allowable social gathering population limit from 250-person limit back to 25-person limit. Most of the states are suggesting that people celebrate Thanksgiving in their own homes, to minimize traveling, and to take precautions when celebrating with others.

New York City plans to shut down its public school system on Thursday, indicating that New York City has begun its second wave of the coronavirus. The city reached a 3 percent test positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average, which is the most conservative threshold of any big school district in the country.  The schools were open for in-person instruction for less than 8 weeks.

This is considered to be a major disappointment for Mayor Bill de Blasio, as he was the first to reopen school buildings. The 300,000 students who had been attending in person will now have to be shuffled back to remote learning. Mayor Blasio promised to reopen the schools but explained that it would not take place until next month or later.

New York governor Andrew M. Cuomo equally voiced concerns and a promise that restrictions would be returning to public life; limited indoor dining and gyms have been open for under 2 months. The actual news conference was delayed for 5 hours as officials attempted to confirm the positivity numbers; the numbers had risen to exactly 3 percent.

As the midwest, west, and the south showed a surge in the number of exposures, New York boasted a low infection rate throughout the summer. New York, one of the major hot spots during the first phase of the pandemic, keeps a much more conservative allowable infection rate. Schools themselves are not showing too high of an infection rate, but the state is choosing to close the schools due to the rise in infection rates nonetheless. This is frustrating for parents and public health officials who both desire in-person instruction.

Unlike Western Europe where bars, restaurants, and theaters are closed while keeping schools open, New York has taken the opposite approach: bars, restaurants, and gyms remain open. Mayor Blasio suggested that the continued limited opening of businesses may have to be reassessed.

Those who suffer, unfortunately, are the children of low income families, as due to the nationwide shortage of devices, students cannot often log on, receive instructions, or do the school work necessary to keep in pace with in-person learning.

Coree ILBO/ copyright (c) 2013-2020, All rights reserved.

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