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Why isn’t more being asked about this?

Discussion in 'Education news' started by PeterQuint, May 26, 2020.

  1. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Exactly this.

    By September, unless there is a major spike, we will be back to normal. 2m is a bit of an arbitrary number anyway.

    I think there will be safeguards. That may mean staggered breaks/banning assemblies/enforced hand sanitation maybe, but schools will have to be back.

    As has been pointed out, 2m where reasonable. In schools it can’t be reasonable. It’s just the reality.
  2. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    Yep - All the nice places near me seem to have been busier then ever. People are idiotic.
  3. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Two things. Firstly, 2m is NOT arbitrary. Three a huge drop off in risk between 1m and 2m. This is science.

    Secondly, we shouldn’t misunderstand ‘reasonable’.

    If you have 15 in a class and in gets up to go to the toilet, it’s unreasonable for the class to grind to a halt for 15 minutes, to move everyone around like some sort of bizarre puzzle whilst that pupil gets out of the room. That’s what ‘unreasonable’ means in relation to 2m.

    It doesn’t mean you reduce 2m to 1m, because you otherwise can’t get enough pupils in.

    2m is 2m. Occasionally it might lapse accidentally. That’s different to deliberately placing pupils less than 2m away from each other.
    ridleyrumpus, Catgirl1964 and Marisha like this.
  4. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I disagree on all points.. I think both are your interpretation. I think the lockdown easing so far suggests that the government will not enforce such a literal reading.
  5. Catgirl1964

    Catgirl1964 Established commenter

    The danger of the virus infecting from 2m distance compared to 1m is 10 to 30 times less according to the scientific advisers. I rest my case, m’ lord.
    ridleyrumpus and Sally006 like this.
  6. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    The distance thing is on the news as I write this.

    Distance ‘up to 3m greatly reduced transmission risk’.

    Each 1m halved transmission.

    That’s WHO.

    We need to remember that time is almost as important as distance.

    Sitting 1.5 metres from someone in a restaurant for an hour is quite different to pupils sat 1m from each other, 6 hours a day, 5 days a week.
  7. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    You can disagree all you like. The 2m thing I’ve just covered. The ‘reasonable’ thing I got from an interview with a minister on the tv the other day.
  8. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    The other thing that’s coming up is seating position. This is how it’s been explained.

    Imagine a restaurant. Two tables for 2 diners each against the same wall. You might have two people sat closer than 2m, but they’re sat back-to-back. They’re sat less than 2m from the person they’re dining with face-to-face, but presumably they live together.

    So there’s some wriggle room on 2m there, but that wouldn’t apply to pupils sat side-by-side.
    Catgirl1964 and agathamorse like this.
  9. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I know I can. I have.

    I still see no reason why the govt would give themselves wriggle room in their documentation if they wouldn’t use it
  10. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    It is theoretically possible to reduce all risk of viral illness and death. It would mean living in a bubble somewhere isolated from everyone else and all kinds of other problems and morbidities, and would probably result in an early death from something else, but there we are.

    But let's look at reality, without hysteria. The fact is that this virus is only like flu, except that it's more infectious because it doesn't show symptoms for some time whilst people are nonetheless able to transmit it.

    Like flu, it is serious primarily for the same sort of people who die each year from flu between December and March. Healthy, non-obese people with no co-morbidities are unlikely to die from it, even if they become quite ill for a while. I once had real flu, and it knocked me out for two weeks, during which time for three days I was too weak to go up the stairs without having two rests on the way up. I don't want to feel like that again! - anyone who has had flu will sympathise, I'm sure. But I was healthy and fit and got over it, and I would hope that I would react the same to this virus if - or probably when - I encounter it. (If I haven't already had it).

    But because of its potential to infect a lot of people at the same time through asymptomatic carriers, it could overwhelm suddenly any healthcare system - which happened elsewhere but, fortunately, not in the UK. This was the big risk, really.

    So, given the facts a) that the virus is here, b) that living in a sterile bubble is neither possible nor desirable for most of us and c) that there is a need to balance the low risk of getting a bad dose of Covid19 with the need to have a more normal social and economic life, we as teachers have to decide what to do, just like other members of society. I would suggest that the removal of the risk is impossible, but that sensible behaviour can minimise it.

    The amount of risk that is acceptable will vary from person to person depending on many factors and viewpoints, but there comes a point in my view where one has to be a bit unselfish and accept that for the benefit of the children we teach and of society in general we have to start doing our jobs again, and not worrying too much about the chance of being ill.

    But the main point to remember is that, one way or another, it seems likely that most of us will at some point get this damned virus and, after we recover (which >99% of us probably will), we won't have to worry about it anymore. So whether it's this week, next month or in September, we're going to have to deal with it.
    ACOYEAR8 likes this.
  11. CabbageWhite20

    CabbageWhite20 Occasional commenter

    I agree with quite a bit of what you say. I’m not certain about your point regarding immunity. I didn’t think there was certainty yet that you would be immune after catching this? I thought the best scenario was possible immunity for a yearish, but as yet that is unknown.
  12. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Some good points, but some errors.

    You say the main difference between this and flu is the infection rate. You missed the other small issue about the mortality rate, which is far higher.

    But you’ve also missed the whole point of what we should be doing. You’re right that we can’t eliminate all risk, nor remain in lockdown until a vaccine arrives.

    What we can do is remain in lockdown for a few more weeks until the virus all but disappears, before opening up carefully.

    We’ve got R below 1. That should continue to fall, and when track and trace is up and running, the odd mini outbreak can be stamped on before it rises again.

    But what we appear to have decided to do is to wait until R has just dipped under 1, and before track and trace is up and running, as a point to ease up on lockdown.

    Our situation in schools speaks volumes. We’re going to get little benefit from sending a small handful of pupils back for just a few weeks before the summer. It’d be far more sensible to wait until September when it’ll be so much safer.

    We’re going for maximum risk with minimum reward.
  13. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    Thanks for your rational and thoughtful post. I'll mention a couple of things in response.

    I didn't mention the mortality rate because I don't think we can know what it is. I wasn't aware that CV19 was far greater. I don't see how one can actually find the mortality rate, because we don't know how many people have had this virus, even if we have a rough idea of who may have died of it (not with it!).

    I don't think I've missed the point of what we should be doing - I just don't agree that keeping us locked down longer is the right way. We can disagree on that, of course. My reasoning is that I think the dangers of a continuing lockdown may in the end prove to be more disastrous for more people than opening things up.

    We may not know how all these things pan out for some time, of course. Time, I suppose, will tell.
    PeterQuint likes this.
  14. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    Me too, but then a couple of weeks ago I saw two fairly reliable (I think) sites that stated that the virus material that had been reported as being found after people had had it and recovered was in fact dead virus cells, and that in fact people were NOT getting it twice. So that seemed hopeful.
    But I take your point - we're very much on a learning curve on this one I suppose, and it may be ages before the medical scientists get it worked out fully.
    agathamorse likes this.
  15. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    On the immunity front, no one knows what the future holds.

    What we do know is that there have been six and a half million cases, almost 400,000 deaths, and over 3 million recoveries. And, apart from a few rumours and oddities, there hasn’t been a single, verified case of someone testing positive, fully recovering, then coming down with the disease again.

    That doesn’t mean it’s never happened. But it does mean that, if you get the virus, the odds are stacked against you getting it again, at least in the short term.
  16. Happyregardless

    Happyregardless Occasional commenter

    agathamorse likes this.
  17. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    agathamorse likes this.
  18. Happyregardless

    Happyregardless Occasional commenter

    Well exactly - nothing wrong with the following procedure when this was discovered. But previously they were saying it wasn't likely for children to contract or spread Covid
    But on that news post, many reactors are now either so confused or cynical about what is or isn't happening/true, they are saying everything now is scaremongering...
    maybe different if the reactors were education staff....
    agathamorse and Marisha like this.
  19. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Marisha and agathamorse like this.
  20. Catgirl1964

    Catgirl1964 Established commenter

    A case near me reported of a positive test on a student in an infant school. Another child undergoing test too. School closed for two weeks and a deep clean. And so it begins...

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