Parents want public schools to focus on academics and implement coronavirus mitigation policies that acknowledge the costs and unsettled questions associated with masks and vaccines. The erosion of trust between public schools and families feeds the perception that board members, school administrators, and educators are not listening to parents’ legitimate concerns. Adding to the frustration is the fact that taxpayers realize that they have limited options: elect a new school board majority or enroll their children in a school of choice.
While natural immunity is stronger than vaccine-induced immunity, proving natural immunity is difficult because fewer than one-fourth of infections are documented and antibodies testing is hit-or-miss. Vaccine mandates would affect more people with natural immunity (the stronger immunity) than those without any immunity, which would not justify the ostensible public-health case for such mandates. If the vaccines are effective as we know them to be, there's no need to deprive other people of their livelihoods for not being vaccinated, especially given the better-than-even odds that their immunity is better.
DHHS data show that North Carolinians with natural immunity are much less likely to contract Covid than even vaccinated individuals. Data show the reinfection rate (a measure of the strength of natural immunity) is lower than the post-vaccination infection rate (strength of vaccination). The reinfection rate was likely less (possibly much less) than 0.8% while the post-vaccination infection rate was at least 1.3% (and possibly much greater).
Federal Covid legislation has brought over $6 billion in funding to North Carolina schools. The additional money equates to approximately $3,900 per student, almost four times the 2019-20 annual federal per-student expenditure ($994). Pressure to spend the money wisely is real — and good — because resources used to address specific Covid-related needs, expand student and parental options, and tie spending to the student will be money well spent.
School districts' mask requirements reveal deep differences about who should make decisions about children’s health and how they are educated. Florida allows parents of children who were threatened or bullied because of mask choice to attend another public or private school of their choice. North Carolina should consider similar legislation; giving parents the choice over how and where their child is educated is key to ending the mask wars.
Nearly every public school district in North Carolina is forcing face masks on students. Researchers are sounding the alarm about the psychological, physical, social, developmental, and academic harms of masks on young schoolchildren. With the benefits so uncertain and the potential costs so large, we must be asking whether these mandates are really worth it.
Data from the CDC and state DHHS show that North Carolina has not been suffering excess deaths from Covid-19 since mid-March 2021. While Covid-19 is still out there, its effect on North Carolina is no longer causing a statistical anomaly in terms of deaths, meaning it is behaving more and more like an endemic virus, such as a flu, not a pandemic. If North Carolina is no longer witnessing excess deaths owing to Covid-19, then why does Gov. Cooper still keep the state in the minority of U.S. states still under a "State of Emergency"?
North Carolina is one of only ten states that continue to schoolchildren to all be masked. Elected officials want mask policies to be in the hands of local communities and not the Cooper administration. A recent ABC Science Collaborative study of COVID-19 transmission in schools is misleading and ignores scientific research on the harms of face coverings.
K-12 public school districts in North Carolina have received about $6 billion in federal funds to help address the coronavirus pandemic. On average, since last March, school districts have spent about 11% of funds appropriated for Covid relief. The low level of expenditures raise legitimate questions about the nature of the emergency and how federal dollars are spent.
Research continues to find serious, deadly effects of lockdowns and severe government restrictions over Covid-19, such as Gov. Cooper's, while failing to find evidence of their purported benefits. From March 2020 through January 2021 (the end of available data), under Cooper's unrelenting orders, North Carolina has been witnessing a second excess death event other than Covid-19. It is disheartening to see evidence of an ongoing, non-Covid death event months and months after citing science and data to sound the alarm repeatedly in the hopes of warding off such grim results.
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