My daughter just turned six, do you know what she wanted for her birthday? To be able to “go back to school and see my friends” … now because of media fear mongering and false data I have to have the heart breaking conversation with my daughter that she can only go back to the school she loves for 4 hours a day 2 days a week.
I have to tell my employer that my availability will again change, I have to re-configure childcare if available, I have to reconfigure remote learning, I have to reconfigure schedules, I have to reconfigure the financial impacts of all this reconfiguring.
As a single mother, who went to school nights to get a bachelors in accounting, worked two jobs to support my child while getting my education to best care for her, I now have to manage the stress of keeping my own job, being a school educator, trying to separate out my role as mom, working mom, teacher, and somewhere in there fit in something normal for her, so she doesn’t begin to suffer from feelings that this is in some way her fault; that she like all kids being lumped into some false narrative that they are “super spreaders” of COVID-19.
Because what she sees now, is fear, fear when we go to the store and people move away from her. Because no matter how many times I try to explain and quell these feelings that there is nothing wrong with her, she’s six, she takes that in on some level. The upset, the constant upset that she hasn’t been able to hug a friend, the physicality that she misses in that simple act of hugging a friend and then there is the insecurity about what her day to day without a normal schedule of school and school related activities will feel like even when Mommy does her best to make it all “work” and flow smoothly.
I am not upset because I need a “babysitter.” I am upset because an educational environment is so crucial for school-aged children. It allows for the mix of spaces and context to which a child is able to grow and learn. It provides additional stimulations outside of the home that allows children to gain positive stimulation, new interests, intellectual arousal, creative outlets and access to different perspectives. This is all so important for the developing child brain as it is a complex organ that is constantly physically changing itself. Throughout all of our lives, the brain re-wires itself based on experiences and different environments. This is why rich educational environments in these early stages of development for our growing school aged children and adolescents are so vitally important. Not only are children learning new things in new environments, their brains are constantly applying knowledge of past experiences to newer ones, to just take this away especially in the absence of supporting data to keep them from these experiences is criminal. Here’s a study that shows this.
I have written to every Newspaper in New Hampshire, the Governor, Congress, the Schoolboard, the ReOpenNH group, even the office of our sitting President every week for the past 4 months. I want our great state of New Hampshire to weather this storm, but not at the expense of the economy, our communities and our children.
Here, I am responding to Dr. Mosley’s story in the Union Leader:
Where is Dr. Mosely’s data coming from … 12% … this plan and this approach is not data driven … the irreparable harm this will do to school age children is insurmountable …
Last census showed 86,605 persons in Nashua, NH
23,379 being children 19 and under
The COVID Dashboard for today in NH shows 468 total cases of COVID for persons 19 and under … only 9 are/were hospitalized and 0 deaths
It does not say where the 468 children were/are located …
So if we just used that whole 468 number as if they were all Nashua Children … that is 1.98% of all of Nashua’s children (468/23,379 = 0.0198)
Where is this “educator” sourcing his data? And why are we as parents of Nashua’s children just supposed to take this as the true and complete data for the decision he’s made to harm the children of Nashua?
And our governor has washed his hands of NH’s education as he left it all up to each district to create plans for which they can approve on their own with no pushback from our elected official
While Hurricane Katrina may not have been a “pandemic,” it certainly displaced children as this COVID “pandemic” has done, the data available to show the aftermath & effects on children is vast, grab any Pubmed article/study on this to see what one year of academic displacement has done to the mental health of the hurricane survivors: (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21838059/; https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23105037/
Nashua , NH