Back to School

Can you believe that it's that time of the year already? It feels like summer just started, only for it to end! For those of you who have children in school and even heading off to college, this year, in particular, is more stressful than most. With school being virtual last school season due to the pandemic, they are now accepting students physically. I'm sure there's some anxiety around who is vaccinated, who isn't, and the masking and social distancing rules. With the new Covid strain, Delta, that's said to be worse than the original strain, mask mandates aren't consistent, tensions and anxiety are high, and the unknown is something parents should worry about. 

With all of what's going on, the kids want to be able to get back to school and have some normalcy (will it ever be "normal" again) so that they can see and play with their friends--oh, and learn. :) But how do we keep them safe, especially if they are too young to be vaccinated? Below are some tips that I think would be helpful and maybe ease your mind a bit. 

 1. Stress the importance of washing hands throughout the day. Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or with soap and water, eliminates germs, including viruses that may be on your hands. For younger children, you will have to rely on the teachers to ensure that they are washing their hands frequently and using hand sanitizer throughout the day, especially after recess. However, the older children can carry hand sanitizer with them and use it often and physically wash their hands throughout the day. Stress the importance of not touching their face (eyes, mouth, and nose), as those are entryways into our bodies for viruses. Be sure that they also wash their hands as soon as they come home to avoid spreading germs throughout the house.

 2. Cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. As part of manners, this should have been taught growing up. However, some people haven't, or may have well, forgotten their manners. Please re-iterate to your children that this is the number 1 super spreader of viruses. Did you know that sneeze and cough droplets can travel to over six feet?

 3. See something, say something. We have all heard this before in the airports. But with Covid spreading by sick people (and even people who aren't feeling sick), we have to be vigilant. If your child is sick, PLEASE KEEP THEM HOME! Get them tested and do not allow them back to school until they either have a negative test result or feeling much better. But how many times do parents send their kids to school knowing that they are sick but can't afford to stay home due to having to miss pay, or their job duties call for them to be there? I understand those dilemmas, but health is more important. Let your children know that if they see that another child is sick--coughing, sneezing, acting sluggish, please have them let a teacher or school staff member know so that that child can be removed from the other children until their parents come and get them. They can even tell a teacher in confidence if they're afraid of being labeled as a "snitch" or a "tattle tale."

I know that's a lot to take in, but the kids can still have fun in school. Following these protocols are well worth the health of our children, ourselves, and others. 

Here's to a wonderful and safe school year!

Kausha Wells, Owner/CEO