The School District of Philadelphia implemented perhaps the “stupidest COVID rule since March 2020” that will require each student and staff member to mask up during the first 10 days of instruction.
Pre-kindergarteners (ages 3-5) in the nation’s 8th largest school district will have the burden of wearing a mask for the entire school year despite studies that show masks have done more harm than good.
And to put an even greater onus on the district of some 200,000 school children who are at virtually no risk from the virus, the Student Mask Guidance for 2022-23 School Year instructs that “cloth masks alone are no longer considered to be effective protection against the spread of coronavirus.”
So, instead of one mask for children, the district recommends slapping two masks across the children’s and educators’ faces with their number one preferred masking scenario being a “3 ply disposable surgical mask supplied by the District, with the addition of a cloth mask.”
Other policies that even the highly politicized Centers for Disease Control do not support include a “mask to stay” program which will require students to wear a mask “for 10 days after their last date of exposure.” Additionally, students and administrators who isolate at home for five days after the onset of symptoms can return to school if the symptoms have subsided although they will be segregated and “must eat in a designated area.”
The policies which include a staff vaccine mandate were touted by the district’s top pediatrician in a Friday press conference.
“We are committed to keeping students in school for in-person learning,” Dr. Kendra McDown said, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported, adding, “Our schools are hubs for our community and are among the safest places for our students to be.”
McDown also indicated that the district might be poised to flip-flop around on its masking policy this school year, as it did last school year.
“It is important that we remain flexible, as we have done for the past 2-1/2 years,” the district’s chief medical officer said.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker Justin Spiro slammed the new guidelines on social media.
“This may win the award of stupidest COVID rule since March 2020,” he tweeted on Friday, referencing the 10-day masking rule.
In a later tweet, he noted the insanity of making young children do speech therapy with a face diaper on.
Philadelphia will force 5-year-olds to mask in speech therapy for the first 10 days of the school year.
Will Philadelphia also force bar patrons and concert-goers to mask for that time period?
Of course not.
Low-risk children once again bear the brunt of COVID restrictions.
— Justin Spiro, LCSW (@Jusrangers) August 12, 2022
A New York University Langone Medical Center professor of medicine said there is “no public health value” in the district’s 10-day mask policy.
“The whole thing is, mandates aren’t working at all. So, you know, they just obscure the question about whether there’s any public health value in actually doing any of this,” Dr. Marc Siegel told Fox News. “I mean, I think if you’re at a high risk, there is. So if I was in an area with a lot of spread, and I was at high risk, I might choose to wear a mask indoors. But there’s no evidence that these mandates [are] doing anything.”
“Mandates for ten days are like a sign of hypocrisy,” he added.
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