COVID-19 Cases Rising At BHS

Many Students Found Not Wearing Masks Right

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Photo by Ava Lubash

Ava Lubash, Staff Writer

The COVID-19 cases have dramatically increased in numbers these past couple weeks, and it is only getting worse. Teachers are talking to their classes and telling them what is happening in regards to all the missing teachers and students. Friday, Dec. 17, alone, there were 44 teachers absent from school; most due to COVID-19 causes. Last week, 13 students were pulled out of school because of the virus and since then many more are quarantining . 

Superintendent Meg Mayo-Brown said in an email issued to staff on Dec. 10, “We are most definitely in a surge, and we expect to see increased numbers as we return from the holiday break.” 

The holidays are a time to spend with families and friends, leading to the worry that the spread is going to be uncontrollable with all the socializing. 

“There are too many students to count that I see daily wearing their masks incorrectly,” said Sonya Lomax , “I understand why people don’t want to wear them, but it’s the time we live in right now; we have to do what we have to do to keep ourselves safe.”

The increase in case counts places an additional burden on schools, and particularly our school nurses,”

— Meg Mayo-Brown

This disease may not be deadly to many of the students or even teachers at Barnstable High, but the loved ones at home could be at risk. For example, babies and/or people of the older generation have a high chance of experiencing COVID-19 in a deadly way. 

“I don’t feel unsafe when around students who are wearing their masks below their nose because I am vaccinated and it adds a sense of safety to me,” said junior Lucie Ells, “If everyone was vaccinated we could remove this issue in our school and the cases probably would not be so high.”

The CDC does recommend COVID-19 vaccinations as they are safe and effective. If the vaccination rate in the school reaches 80 percent, the mask mandate can officially be dropped and maybe learning would start to feel normal again. Hopkinton High School was the first to successfully reach the goal of 80 percent vaccinated, and now go to school mask-free. 

“The increase in case counts places an additional burden on schools, and particularly our school nurses,” said Mayo-Brown. 

The nurses have never been so busy in an attempt to maintain a healthy school while tracking down close contacts with those who carry the virus. 

The Department of Massachusetts Education will not permit schools to resort to online courses, “For fall 2021, all districts and schools will be required to be in-person, full-time, five days a week.”

In the case that schools are closed, the teachers and students would have to make up the missed time at the end of the year. However, this is a worse case scenario. In order to prevent this result, students and staff shall continue to follow the COVID-19 guidelines in the correct manner.