Back to school

Covid-19 discussion, bring your own statistics
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jimbob
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Re: Back to school

Post by jimbob » Mon Sep 28, 2020 6:42 pm

jdc wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 6:24 pm
jimbob wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:42 am
AMS wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:15 am
It may or may not match to local gov wards, but that is indeed where the main university campus is in Exeter.
In some places it seems to be a single ward, in others (like my location) it's several. I'd guess they're probably roughly equal population regardless of area.
afaik, they don't match up with wards. Except perhaps by coincidence?

Your population guess is correct:

Middle-layer Super Output Areas are formed by stitching together Lower-layer Super Output Areas, the minimum population is 5000 and the mean is 7200.

LSOAs are 1000-1500 pop., and they're stitched together from adjacent Output Areas.

Output areas are "built from clusters of adjacent unit postcodes".
Nice, thanks
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:53 am

mediocrity511 wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:16 pm
badger wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:56 pm
mediocrity511 wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 12:34 pm


It would be interesting to see that extra data. However the schools guidelines state that whilst children don't need to distance from others in their bubbles, staff should be distancing from students and each other. There would also be confounding issues where staff can access priority tests whilst children can't and given children's relatively mild symptoms and wider range of non standard symptoms then their cases might fly under the radar.

I do know that in some cases whole schools have been tested after an outbreak, presumably to gather this kind of data.

https://www.st-margarets.bury.sch.uk/st ... PiGeaPuJU8

I've seen the letters from this school discussed, they're not the standard PHE ones and give quite a lot of information into the situation at least one school is finding itself in.
Agreed, lots to unconfound and more data needed on this, but it would good if we had more to go on the data they've collected so far...
...or just close all the schools now? Or incorporate a different strategy on school grounds? Is that what you're suggesting?
No, I don't think closing all the schools now is feasible or desirable. Schools did have to have online learning plans in place by the end of September though, so we are at a point where those plans are ready to be activated.

I think if I were in charge, I'd extend everywhere's October half term to two weeks (some places like Nottingham already have this). At a minimum, I'd stop fines for clinically vulnerable children and those with vulnerable family members. Then I think it would be worth looking at rota systems, we know school outbreaks were far, far fewer when only key worker and socially vulnerable kids were in throughout lockdown and they were also much lower when more children went back in bubbles of 15. There would need to be money thrown at it for staff, technology etc and probably some kind of childcare provision for key workers alongside.

But the current system seems unsustainable and unsafe. Blended learning isn't ideal, but if it can stop random rolling shutdowns, which are much harder to plan for, and keep teachers, students and their families safe then it's worth looking at.
Yep, gains to be had there, and stopping the fines for associated vulnerables needs sorting, but is clearly too complex for Gavin Williamson. A bit like tying shoelaces, perhaps.

Agree current system unsustainable and unsafe, but then so is shutting schools. Like a lot of things, this really should have been sorted over the summer, as part of a broader plan for academic year with COVID-19 (Back-up plans for examinations in place from September etc.)

Scheduled shutdowns, such as two week half term, seem sensible - weirdly we have one school locally that has announced it but not any of the others, which seems to miss the point. I get the idea of reducing density on site, and there's some evidence coming out of New York I think that backs this up with regards to schools, but I can't see it being achieved now and I personally think teaching half-in-half-out method is to be avoided if at all possible (I've done a bit of teaching that way and it's insane). Maybe a rota system by year group, but one class split across two classrooms? Whatever, there will be complaints from parents with siblings who will inevitably be on different rotas for some.

I was speaking to school and Local Authority in May and June about thinking more laterally and with acceptance that C-19 wasn't going away - recruiting more staff and venues, possibly from the Arts sector, for a one year plan, and thinking about outdoor schools, inducing former teachers to come back for one last dance (many of whom are quite young), giving LAs and Heads more latitude with the curriculum to make the most of these changes and training up specialist teams to work across local networks of schools to give advice and help where needed. Most of all, getting a brains trust going that involved all orgs/stakeholders/etc (DofE, anyone?). Not a moon shot, but something achievable at scale. But no one wants to know. It's all cross your fingers and hope it goes away. Or someone else's problems.

Numbers were too high when we went back, and Testing and Track & Trace wasn't up to the job, already struggling under the weight of local outbreaks (and perhaps, according to ONS, foreign holiday returnees and socialising twenty-somethings). Not to mention very low adherence to self-isolation and quarantine. I don't think schools are the only driver of recent increase in numbers as some seem too.

I feel sorry for schools (and may have come across over-protective of them on here), because they are really doing what they can but need way more help. When I look at the effort that went into getting my own industry back up and running, I can see what's possible, but it looks like we're in for a year of hokey-cokey with schools, much to everyone's annoyance and no one's surprise.

Hooray, a loser-length post. Sorry :-/

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Re: Back to school

Post by mediocrity511 » Tue Sep 29, 2020 6:59 pm

badger wrote:
Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:53 am
mediocrity511 wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:16 pm
badger wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:56 pm


Agreed, lots to unconfound and more data needed on this, but it would good if we had more to go on the data they've collected so far...
...or just close all the schools now? Or incorporate a different strategy on school grounds? Is that what you're suggesting?
No, I don't think closing all the schools now is feasible or desirable. Schools did have to have online learning plans in place by the end of September though, so we are at a point where those plans are ready to be activated.

I think if I were in charge, I'd extend everywhere's October half term to two weeks (some places like Nottingham already have this). At a minimum, I'd stop fines for clinically vulnerable children and those with vulnerable family members. Then I think it would be worth looking at rota systems, we know school outbreaks were far, far fewer when only key worker and socially vulnerable kids were in throughout lockdown and they were also much lower when more children went back in bubbles of 15. There would need to be money thrown at it for staff, technology etc and probably some kind of childcare provision for key workers alongside.

But the current system seems unsustainable and unsafe. Blended learning isn't ideal, but if it can stop random rolling shutdowns, which are much harder to plan for, and keep teachers, students and their families safe then it's worth looking at.
Yep, gains to be had there, and stopping the fines for associated vulnerables needs sorting, but is clearly too complex for Gavin Williamson. A bit like tying shoelaces, perhaps.

Agree current system unsustainable and unsafe, but then so is shutting schools. Like a lot of things, this really should have been sorted over the summer, as part of a broader plan for academic year with COVID-19 (Back-up plans for examinations in place from September etc.)

Scheduled shutdowns, such as two week half term, seem sensible - weirdly we have one school locally that has announced it but not any of the others, which seems to miss the point. I get the idea of reducing density on site, and there's some evidence coming out of New York I think that backs this up with regards to schools, but I can't see it being achieved now and I personally think teaching half-in-half-out method is to be avoided if at all possible (I've done a bit of teaching that way and it's insane). Maybe a rota system by year group, but one class split across two classrooms? Whatever, there will be complaints from parents with siblings who will inevitably be on different rotas for some.

I was speaking to school and Local Authority in May and June about thinking more laterally and with acceptance that C-19 wasn't going away - recruiting more staff and venues, possibly from the Arts sector, for a one year plan, and thinking about outdoor schools, inducing former teachers to come back for one last dance (many of whom are quite young), giving LAs and Heads more latitude with the curriculum to make the most of these changes and training up specialist teams to work across local networks of schools to give advice and help where needed. Most of all, getting a brains trust going that involved all orgs/stakeholders/etc (DofE, anyone?). Not a moon shot, but something achievable at scale. But no one wants to know. It's all cross your fingers and hope it goes away. Or someone else's problems.

Numbers were too high when we went back, and Testing and Track & Trace wasn't up to the job, already struggling under the weight of local outbreaks (and perhaps, according to ONS, foreign holiday returnees and socialising twenty-somethings). Not to mention very low adherence to self-isolation and quarantine. I don't think schools are the only driver of recent increase in numbers as some seem too.

I feel sorry for schools (and may have come across over-protective of them on here), because they are really doing what they can but need way more help. When I look at the effort that went into getting my own industry back up and running, I can see what's possible, but it looks like we're in for a year of hokey-cokey with schools, much to everyone's annoyance and no one's surprise.

Hooray, a loser-length post. Sorry :-/
No, I feel very sorry for schools as well. I'm highly critical of government policy surrounding them, they've been absolutely hung out to dry. I've also made it really clear to our school that if we feel we need to withdraw Miniocrity, it will be no criticism of them, as we know they are trying their hardest.

All those ideas about outdoor schools and arts etc. is the kind of stuff I can see working. And I think you'd get former teachers back if conditions were safe. My mum was doing supply until this academic year, when she's decided she'll no longer do it because she doesn't want to be called in to replace a string of self isolating teachers. She'd go back for a small group though, doubly so if it was outside.

But there's no money and no innovative thinking, it's just business as usual. We can have money off eating out, but we can't have extra money spent for children and families.

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Re: Back to school

Post by AMS » Tue Sep 29, 2020 7:45 pm

badger wrote:
Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:53 am
Numbers were too high when we went back, and Testing and Track & Trace wasn't up to the job, already struggling under the weight of local outbreaks (and perhaps, according to ONS, foreign holiday returnees and *socialising twenty-somethings*). Not to mention very low adherence to self-isolation and quarantine. I don't think schools are the only driver of recent increase in numbers as some seem too.
I was talking to a colleague today about the absolute state of everything, and she made the very valid point that some of those testing positive were *working* in all those restaurants and pubs we were so encouraged to use over the summer, rather than socialising. It's possible that some of the school and student accommodation outbreaks now are a direct result of the "eat out to help out" scheme.

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:15 pm

AMS wrote:
Tue Sep 29, 2020 7:45 pm
badger wrote:
Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:53 am
Numbers were too high when we went back, and Testing and Track & Trace wasn't up to the job, already struggling under the weight of local outbreaks (and perhaps, according to ONS, foreign holiday returnees and *socialising twenty-somethings*). Not to mention very low adherence to self-isolation and quarantine. I don't think schools are the only driver of recent increase in numbers as some seem too.
I was talking to a colleague today about the absolute state of everything, and she made the very valid point that some of those testing positive were *working* in all those restaurants and pubs we were so encouraged to use over the summer, rather than socialising. It's possible that some of the school and student accommodation outbreaks now are a direct result of the "eat out to help out" scheme.
oh, yes, absolutely. It was my mangled English here that's at fault. thanks for picking me up on it. I was trying and failing to remember the ONS wording here, which doesn't cast aspersions re "socialising" as I inadvertently did.
Positivity rates have increased over time amongst those aged under 35 years who had socially-distanced direct contact with six or more people aged 18 to 69 years, suggesting socially-distanced direct contact in younger age groups is an increasingly important factor in contracting COVID-19.
although it does say in the report:
We estimate positivity rates based on socially-distanced direct contact as reported by each participant; interpretation of what socially-distanced contact is may vary between participants.

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Re: Back to school

Post by bagpuss » Fri Oct 09, 2020 4:55 pm

Well, this is completely insane.

The bagkitten goes to a childminder after school 2 days a week.

The childminder's secondary school age son has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, and had to be collected from school today as a result. He is now in quarantine for 2 weeks. But the childminder is, apparently, allowed to remain open until the point at which said son gets symptoms, if he does.

So he's not allowed to leave the house, but we can send our kids to spend time in the same house with him? I'm assuming he will be kept away from the rooms where the childminded kids go but still, it's madness. Edit: re-read the email and yes, he will be isolating in his room.

The bagkitten will not be going next week - we'll find some way to get to school to collect her instead. If necessary I have friends who won't mind walking her back to our house along with their own kids - at least one person walks past the end of our road so it's not much out of her way.

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Re: Back to school

Post by AMS » Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:07 pm

That is crazy, and you're right to keep your kid out of there.

We really haven't got to grips with the "isolate" bit of test-trace-isolate, have we?

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Re: Back to school

Post by shpalman » Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:32 pm

shpalman wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:59 pm
20 schools now
"over 60"
Over sixty schools and education settings in Greater Lincolnshire have had positive cases of coronavirus this week.

Lincolnshire County Council said on October 9 that it is working with 43 schools with COVID-19 infections.
The bits of Greater Lincolnshire which aren't Lincolnshire are the bits which used to be South Humberside, which for some reason is divided into North East Lincolnshire (Grimsby and Cleethorpes) and North Lincolnshire (where Sc*nthorpe is).
molto tricky

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:29 pm

shpalman wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:32 pm
shpalman wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:59 pm
20 schools now
"over 60"
Over sixty schools and education settings in Greater Lincolnshire have had positive cases of coronavirus this week.

Lincolnshire County Council said on October 9 that it is working with 43 schools with COVID-19 infections.
The bits of Greater Lincolnshire which aren't Lincolnshire are the bits which used to be South Humberside, which for some reason is divided into North East Lincolnshire (Grimsby and Cleethorpes) and North Lincolnshire (where Sc*nthorpe is).
And only one closed. So no major outbreaks (as far as have been tested)?

How many schools are there in total in Greater Lincs?

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Re: Back to school

Post by sTeamTraen » Fri Oct 09, 2020 9:17 pm

badger wrote:
Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:15 pm
although it does say in the report:
We estimate positivity rates based on socially-distanced direct contact as reported by each participant; interpretation of what socially-distanced contact is may vary between participants.
[/quote]

For the group of school-age kids I walked past earlier, social distancing seems to mean a cigarette break between two extensive bouts of tongue hockey.
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Re: Back to school

Post by Grumble » Fri Oct 09, 2020 10:39 pm

My eldest is at a school where so far 3 classes have been sent home because of positive tests. It’s a big school, about 10 classes per year, but even so there’s a sense that this is about to go big. I’m planning on having to stay home soon.
I know this is vitriol, no solution, spleen venting, but I feel better having screamed, don’t you?

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Re: Back to school

Post by mediocrity511 » Tue Oct 13, 2020 4:49 pm

Second case at miniocrity's school. However, I'm very impressed with the school. Knowing our situation and concerns, I got a call from the deputy head this evening outlining the situation and explaining how they actually took action over and above what PHE suggested.

Obviously I'd prefer to be able to keep her home without penalty. But I feel better knowing that school will at least keep us as informed as possible.

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Re: Back to school

Post by shpalman » Thu Oct 15, 2020 6:00 am

badger wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:29 pm
shpalman wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:32 pm
shpalman wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:59 pm
20 schools now
"over 60"
Over sixty schools and education settings in Greater Lincolnshire have had positive cases of coronavirus this week.

Lincolnshire County Council said on October 9 that it is working with 43 schools with COVID-19 infections.
The bits of Greater Lincolnshire which aren't Lincolnshire are the bits which used to be South Humberside, which for some reason is divided into North East Lincolnshire (Grimsby and Cleethorpes) and North Lincolnshire (where Sc*nthorpe is).
And only one closed. So no major outbreaks (as far as have been tested)?

How many schools are there in total in Greater Lincs?
Lincolnshire 332 primary, 86 secondary, 63 sixth form.

North Lincolnshire 67, 22, 12

North East Lincolnshire 53, 16, 9

So a total of 660.

At least 80 have had covid cases: "Lincolnshire County Council said on October 14 that it is working with 53 schools with COVID-19 infections. North East Lincolnshire’s figure stands at 21, and at least six in North Lincolnshire."
molto tricky

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Thu Oct 15, 2020 9:09 pm

shpalman wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 6:00 am
badger wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:29 pm
shpalman wrote:
Fri Oct 09, 2020 5:32 pm


"over 60"



The bits of Greater Lincolnshire which aren't Lincolnshire are the bits which used to be South Humberside, which for some reason is divided into North East Lincolnshire (Grimsby and Cleethorpes) and North Lincolnshire (where Sc*nthorpe is).
And only one closed. So no major outbreaks (as far as have been tested)?

How many schools are there in total in Greater Lincs?
Lincolnshire 332 primary, 86 secondary, 63 sixth form.

North Lincolnshire 67, 22, 12

North East Lincolnshire 53, 16, 9

So a total of 660.

At least 80 have had covid cases: "Lincolnshire County Council said on October 14 that it is working with 53 schools with COVID-19 infections. North East Lincolnshire’s figure stands at 21, and at least six in North Lincolnshire."
Interesting. Some schools falling off the list and going back to full attendance, many more schools being added. Up to 12%(ish) of schools with some disruption (one case or more), but only 4 schools from that list are closed (am not sure it's 4 out of 660, but it's a fractional percentage of some sort). That's a win for some, I guess.

So possibly schools aren't the super-spreaders that some feared them to be? Or aren't tested effectively to be able to show if they are? Annoyingly the PHE weekly report doesn't differentiate between Universities and Schools under "Education setting" (Or type of school, Primary/Secondary) as am sure that would yield some useful data. Also, their age banding for positive cases is unhelpful in this regard: 10-19 (which in the latest report is now a close second to 20-19) isn't that useful either to differentiate between School and Uni.

Still no sign of a two week half term, and certainly no sign of (more) masks in (more) schools.

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Fri Oct 16, 2020 11:49 am

ONS infection survey, on the other hand, does parse by educational streams


https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulation ... d-covid-19
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Re: Back to school

Post by shpalman » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:33 am

I only just found this from August:

Children’s role in spread of virus bigger than thought

... reporting on this paper:

Pediatric Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2): Clinical Presentation, Infectivity, and Immune Responses
This study reveals that children may be a potential source of contagion in the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic despite having milder disease or a lack of symptoms
molto tricky

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Re: Back to school

Post by shpalman » Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:47 pm

The local health services reckon that schools being open has pushed Milan to a doubling time of about a week, and they calculate R = 2.2.

The regional ordinance is specifying distance learning for the older school years and staggered start times to not overload the public transport.
molto tricky

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Re: Back to school

Post by jimbob » Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:03 am

shpalman wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:47 pm
The local health services reckon that schools being open has pushed Milan to a doubling time of about a week, and they calculate R = 2.2.

The regional ordinance is specifying distance learning for the older school years and staggered start times to not overload the public transport.
Interesting - do you have links for me to tweet? Especially as the person I know who will be most interested is Italian.


Class bubbles are a great idea if children don't have siblings in different classes or different schools.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Back to school

Post by shpalman » Mon Oct 19, 2020 10:29 am

jimbob wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:03 am
shpalman wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:47 pm
The local health services reckon that schools being open has pushed Milan to a doubling time of about a week, and they calculate R = 2.2.

The regional ordinance is specifying distance learning for the older school years and staggered start times to not overload the public transport.
Interesting - do you have links for me to tweet? Especially as the person I know who will be most interested is Italian.


Class bubbles are a great idea if children don't have siblings in different classes or different schools.
For the regional ordinance, there's https://www.lombardianotizie.online/cov ... ordinanza/

For the doubling time and R, that was just briefly mentioned on the news. You can find it at about 2 minutes 15 in the TGR Edizione della notte del 19/10/20 assuming you can watch it outside Italy.

A longer analysis is in the evening edition of 18/10/20 about 4 minutes in.
molto tricky

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Re: Back to school

Post by AMS » Mon Oct 19, 2020 11:08 am

jimbob wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:03 am
Class bubbles are a great idea if children don't have siblings in different classes or different schools.
I wonder if that's a factor in China getting back to normal quicker than many European countries?

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Re: Back to school

Post by jimbob » Mon Oct 19, 2020 11:23 am

shpalman wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 10:29 am
jimbob wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:03 am
shpalman wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 5:47 pm
The local health services reckon that schools being open has pushed Milan to a doubling time of about a week, and they calculate R = 2.2.

The regional ordinance is specifying distance learning for the older school years and staggered start times to not overload the public transport.
Interesting - do you have links for me to tweet? Especially as the person I know who will be most interested is Italian.


Class bubbles are a great idea if children don't have siblings in different classes or different schools.
For the regional ordinance, there's https://www.lombardianotizie.online/cov ... ordinanza/

For the doubling time and R, that was just briefly mentioned on the news. You can find it at about 2 minutes 15 in the TGR Edizione della notte del 19/10/20 assuming you can watch it outside Italy.

A longer analysis is in the evening edition of 18/10/20 about 4 minutes in.
Thanks.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Back to school

Post by Bird on a Fire » Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:07 pm

AMS wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 11:08 am
jimbob wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:03 am
Class bubbles are a great idea if children don't have siblings in different classes or different schools.
I wonder if that's a factor in China getting back to normal quicker than many European countries?
Hmm. Fertility rate in China is 1.6 births per woman, compared with 1.8 in the UK - not a massive difference I'd have thought.

I think the main factor in China was being willing to just tell people what to do and force them to do it in order to limit the pandemic's spread. Other places like NZ (also 1.8 births per woman) have managed similar feats without being so China-ish about it.
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Re: Back to school

Post by FlammableFlower » Mon Oct 19, 2020 4:33 pm

shpalman wrote:
Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:33 am
I only just found this from August:

Children’s role in spread of virus bigger than thought

... reporting on this paper:

Pediatric Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2): Clinical Presentation, Infectivity, and Immune Responses
This study reveals that children may be a potential source of contagion in the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic despite having milder disease or a lack of symptoms
...so school kids are to COVID what mosquitos are to malaria...?

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Re: Back to school

Post by badger » Mon Oct 19, 2020 7:11 pm

Not sure why this wasn't up and running from the start of term. Good to see it happening, but equally frustrating that its findings will be too late to use meaningfully in the second wave (even assuming they report relatively swiftly after the first sampling Nov 2, which is annoyingly just after half term). I can't fathom why they're testing "termly" either, even if a "term" in this case is 1/6th of a school year, as it is defined quite commonly now (rather than 1/3rd). Imagine if they'd done the first sampling in first week of term, and then now?

https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/newsevents/news ... ns-schools

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