Back-to-school 2020: Take 3. It sounds like a movie franchise, right?
2020 has been a rollercoaster for parents and children alike. With the interruptions of the 2020 academic year, it seems like we are starting school for the third time now.
It sounds crazy but even stationery suppliers have jumped onto this marketing campaign.
How many times must a child hear “Back to school, back to reality”? You obviously remember that CNA advert that we would groan at as kids and our parents were probably air-punching with delight.
Fast-forward to 2020 and now our kids have been “back-to-school” thrice! How crazy is this? I feel that we should’ve had a Christmas holiday twice over due to the mental toll that 2020 has been.
At the beginning of this outbreak, unbeknownst to them, the poor things, kids were considered asymptomatic spreaders.
I remember standing in a queue at a Lancet pathology laboratory and the man ahead of me (who I might add was exposed to COVID positive person) was sharing with me how COVID spread due to children. I quickly scooted away from him.
As a mom, the mixture of people’s opinions (read: “expert”), protocols, presidential announcements are frustrating.
The thing that I have noticed is that not even Google has the answer to this, should we send our children back to school or not?
People’s opinions regarding children’s return to school shouldn’t be the deciding factor for your family. It is a decision that you should make for your family.
A majority of schools across the country that have been able to, have implemented COVID protocols. This often includes COVID officers, the training of staff, and procedures in place to ensure the safety of learners and also the teachers.
I completely understand the frustration of filling forms daily however in doing so, schools have been able to isolate learners and enforce a quarantine to prevent a possible break-out. I respect and appreciate the tedious work that these people do daily.
Luckily now as time has passed from the first school shutdown in March, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and medical experts have been able to study the patterns of COVID-19.
I am so ever thankful that the mortality rate directly related to COVID is particularly low.
Despite this many children across the globe face malnourishment, it is predicted to be 36 million children (https://data.unicef.org/topic/covid-19-and-children/). There are many issues relating to COVID that the after-effects will be with us for a while.
In the meantime, as a family, we’ve decided it is best for Adriana to go back to school (again!) for the third term. She is not immunocompromised and is constantly exposed to two working parents so it is unrealistic for us to keep her home.
For the two weeks that she was at school, I cannot commend her school enough for the protocols that they have put in place. Adriana was ecstatic to be back at school and easily eased into the new routines of wearing a mask or a hula-hoop dress for playtime. Yes, it may not look ideal but for now, this is our reality until the virus is under control globally.
Regardless of your decision on whether to send your child back to school or not? I do think it is a personal choice that should be yielded with respect.
As every mom is trying to do her best, as there’s no handbook yet titled “How to raise a well-rounded child during a global pandemic whilst trying to keep your job and run a household”. When it’s published, I’ll be the first to order it.