As New Jersey parents grapple with the decision on whether or not to allow their kids to attend school in person, a new report is certain to give many moms and dads pause. According to the report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association, more than 97,000 children in the US tested positive for COVID during the last two weeks of July.

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In the states that were studied, researchers found a 40 percent increase in the number of COVID cases in children.

Some of the states defined children as anyone up to age 14 while others had a broader definition of “child” including people up to the age of 24.

As many NJ schools prepare to start school in September with a hybrid model – a mixture of in-person and remote learning – states that have already opened schools for in-person learning have had to tell students to stay home in the wake of positive test results.

North Paulding High School in Georgia is one of those schools. After a student posted a picture of a packed hallway filled with teens not social distancing or wearing masks, people questioned how safe in-person learning could be. Principal Gabe Carmona said in a letter to parents that at least six students and three staff members have tested positive for the virus since school started (classes have since moved online, at least for the beginning of this week).

Meanwhile, in Florida, which has been one of the hardest-hit states by COVID, twelve counties plan to reopen for 5 days a week in-person instruction.

As life has started to get back to a version of normal, many people have relaxed their vigilance toward rules and restrictions, forgoing masks and refusing to social distance. Many young people may see themselves as invulnerable because they don’t show any outward signs or symptoms of the virus, but they still have the ability to spread it.

It remains to be seen how schools will be able to serve students while keeping them and staff and parents safe.

Are you planning to send your child back to school for in-person learning? Tell us in the comments.

 

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