Masking During Covid
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– Aug 2, 2022(1 reply)
Just a heads up, I too am pro vax, pro science, and pro choice to mask. My five-year-old has been attending a private Montessori Spanish immersion for two years. We are looking to move to a different Montessori Spanish immersion if not language immersion Montessori, or private, or Christian in oakland, piedmont, or alameda. Looking for any good recommendations for schools that aren’t forcing children to mask or at least given a choice. Since the pandemic my five-year-old school has been continuously wearing mask indoors and outdoors which I think is ridiculous. He’s also exhibiting learning and reading issues but is excelling in other areas such as science math and art and music. My 3 year old twins have been in a dare care setting where masks have not been worn, only by the teachers and they’ve had the same amount of covid outbreaks 1-3 every few months or so as my five-year-old school has had with the strict mask policies and weekly Covid testing. We’re thinking of moving to a different school even though we like the school minus the mask policy, because when we questioned the masks and the science, we were told we could leave. That was the solution! Looking for any great recommendations from past parents at other schools.Aug 2, 2022
– Jul 20, 2022(15 replies)
We would like to find a preschool for our 4 year old that will not be requiring masks for the upcoming school year. I would really appreciate if you could share any info on any school in the North Berkeley / Albany / Kensington area that meets this criteria.
For what it’s worth, I would like to note that masking of preschoolers is not an evidence-based practice and our region is an extreme outlier globally in imposing masking on preschoolers. This is why we are seeking options. We are a pro science pro vax family.Jul 20, 2022
– Mar 25, 2022(4 replies)
I'm a mom to a 2 year and 2 month old boy. He just received a provisional autism diagnosis -- his main challenges are around receptive language and fine motor skills. He also has some sensory challenges - the most prominent one being anything that touches his face. For that reason, mask-wearing is really hard for him. We have been working on getting him to wear a mask with the help of our OT but have not made noticeable gains.
He was supposed to start at a preschool in June, but upon telling them about his challenges, the school said that we would be unable to attend since they have a strict masking policy. I understand that this is being done to protect the children, but can't help but feel disheartened as a mom to a special needs kiddo who really struggles with the sensory aspect of mask wearing.
Anyways, we are now exploring other daycare/preschool options for him that have a more lax masking policy or would be open to making an exception for him because of his sensory challenges and would accept a medical exemption letter. We live in Glenview, Oakland but would consider Berkeley as well. We ideally would love to find a school that has an inclusive environment and would be open to working with us on helping him wear a mask but also show compassion for his challenges. Just to reiterate, we are working on getting him to wear one as we believe in wearing masks especially to protect those who can't be vaccinated, but also don't want him to have to miss out on the benefits of preschool because of his challenges.
Thank you!Mar 25, 2022
– Dec 20, 2021(10 replies)
Hi. So my kiddo is going to be 2 in a few days and starting a new preschool in January. I’m trying to find a KN95 mask that will fit them well. I see lots of reviews of masks for kids though most of them seem to be geared for children over the age of four. Can anyone recommend a mask appropriate for a two year old? washable is preferred and i am open to disposable recommendations too!!! Thank youDec 20, 2021
– Oct 18, 2021(24 replies)
I'm a liberal, pro-science, law-abiding person and I have no interest in allying myself with right-wing crazies. But I'm wondering what we as a community are thinking about masking toddlers, with little data to support the practice, significant harms, and no end in sight.
There are a number of reasons that masks are harmful to preschool-age children:
--they inhibit social and emotional growth;
--they inhibit language development;
--they irritate the skin;
--they are often unsanitary in toddler populations;
--they promote mouth breathing which impairs proper facial development.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends against children under 5 wearing masks as a preventative measure. Accordingly, masks are not recommended for children under 5 in the UK and most countries in the EU (France, Italy, Spain, etc.).
In the US, CDC recommends masks are worn *indoors* for ages 2 and older at childcare facilities. Meanwhile it seems to be the norm around the Bay Area that preschools are requiring masks both indoors and outdoors for ages 2 and over -- this is total masking for toddlers upwards of 40 hours a week for full-time care. Several Bay Area counties including Alameda have criteria for lifting indoor mask requirements for adults (three weeks in CDC moderate tier of caseloads; vaccination thresholds); Marin and SF are already lifting requirements. But childcare settings are an exception to to this lifting, so as far as I can tell there's no reprieve in sight for preschoolers.
Is there some specific benchmark that we are waiting for in California, the US, or as a community before the masking requirement is reduced or lifted for toddlers? Because my patience, as a parent of a three-year old who wears a mask at preschool for 40 hours a week, is wearing thin. FDA vaccine approval for this population, unlike for 5-12 year olds, is very far off (January would be the earliest but that is highly speculative). Meanwhile, there's literally no data to support that masks are effective at reducing transmission in the age 2-4 population. The data shows that COVID is a very minimal risk for children -- a *unvaccinated child* has about as much risk of getting or spreading COVID as a vaccinated 40 year old, if not less (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/12/briefing/covid-age-risk-infection-vac...).
As a parent, I feel the strong need to advocate for preschool children's interests here as they are not able to advocate for themselves. Indeed, children do get used to wearing masks, but that is not a sufficient justification for a potentially harmful practice -- children can get used to almost anything, including several forms of abuse.
Do others here share my concern?
Oct 18, 2021
– Oct 2, 2021(6 replies)
Are there any preschools with openings that require the kids and teachers to wear masks and also do surveillance testing of the kids and staff? I’ve found only one school that meets this criteria and they’re full.Oct 2, 2021
– Aug 19, 2021(14 replies)
We are having trouble finding a face mask that fits our 2 year old. What have you all found that works? We're willing to use either cloth or disposable.
Thanks!Aug 19, 2021
– Aug 16, 2021(5 replies)
Hi BPN community! I could use some advice. Our small daycare is not requiring teachers or kids 2+ to be masked since CA’s “reopening” in June. Since the delta surge, I’ve expressed my concern and to the daycare director and asked that they revisit this policy, shared data and resources, and tried to understand her perspective.
The director feels the other precautions they’re taking are enough: she implied all teachers are vaccinated but couldn’t confirm for employee privacy reasons, parents don’t bring kids with any symptoms without a negative Covid test or dr note, the kids are outside a lot, they have air purifiers… but the fact that they essentially will not even have teachers wear masks is alarming. This school is otherwise highly recommended and we respected the director and practices before this issue. I get that small daycares often take time to implement new policies but at this point, it seems she’s willfully ignoring science and licensing requirements. The daycare has not had any Covid cases and most parents seem to take Covid precautions seriously but I don’t know them well.
I really don’t want to take my kid out of our daycare (and I’m not sure we could even find an opening at an alternate, and we can’t afford a nanny share), but it seems like we may have to move in that direction. Any advice or other things to consider, fellow parents? We can’t not have childcare again. Would sending our kid masked while waiting to get off a safer daycare’s waitlist be something you’d consider? Thank you!
[Moderator note: There is a similar question from a week ago - see No Masking at Preschool]Aug 16, 2021
– Aug 10, 2021(12 replies)
Our preschool currently does not require kids to wear masks. In the past, when the question was asked, the rationale was that it's too hard to keep masks on kids. I have many concerns about this in light of the Delta surge and looking for feedback from other parents on 1) does your daycare/preschool require masks for kids 2 and up as per CDC recommendation? 2) any advice for approaching this topic with the Director?
thank you!Aug 10, 2021
– Mar 8, 2021(10 replies)
Hi - we haven't been able to find a good mask to fit my teen daughter - she's 14 but petite. The grown up masks are too big and child ones too small. We've tried some sellers on Etsy but no luck. I don't have any sewers in my small friend/family circle - is there a place we can go pay to have one made to fit? Or good sources of ones to buy with variable sizes?Mar 8, 2021
– Nov 23, 2020(12 replies)
How is everyone handling people who aren't masked at playgrounds? At least in Berkeley, there are signs everywhere requiring masks for kids and adults, but obviously some people just ignore them, including those with kids perfectly capable of handling it. It drives me crazy to see people acting like rules don't apply to them, but beyond that, these parents are sending a bad message to the kids and putting the rest of us in untenable positions. Would love any strategies anyone has arrived at.Nov 23, 2020
– Sep 19, 2020(5 replies)
We have a 4 yr old boy who had been in full time Montessori preschool pre covid however earlier this year we had a baby so in an abundance of caution we decided not to send him back in June when the school opened up because the children weren’t required to wear masks even though the staff is doing so and proper cleaning is also in effect. The school states they aren’t legally able to mandate masks for the kids due to state licensing rules. However when talking to our sons pediatrician she said there were kids at the practice who attended schools with mandatory masks in the Oakland/ Berkeley area so I’m reaching out to anyone who’s kid attends a preschool with mask requirements or knows of a school. Does this even exist? We live in the Montclair area if that matters. I feel my son needs at the very least a part time program from a structure and social aspect although he is enjoying his time at home with my husband as primary caretaker of both kids.
I want to make sure he’s fully ready for kindergarten next year. Also if your child attends one of these schools how do they and you like it etc?
Thanks in advance for any and all your advise as it relates to this topic
All the Best,
LisaSep 19, 2020
– Jun 24, 2020(13 replies)
HI everyone, our daycare has recently fully opened up but none of the staff or teachers wear masks, and when we inquired about it, they seemed to imply that's just the way it is and that they are not going to force anyone to wear a mask. They ask that parents wear masks during drop-off and pick-up. I'm curious what other daycares are doing in terms of asking staff/teachers to wear masks? I've heard of some reasons against it as young children can be scared of masks, but in this environment with COVID cases still rising so quickly in our county (we are in Oakland), it seems like wearing masks for teachers/staff is the right thing to do? Curious what other daycares are doing. thanks!Jun 24, 2020
– Jun 1, 2020(13 replies)
I'm wondering what other are doing when they encounter people who are not wearing a mask or improperly wearing a mask?
Do you say something?
If it's at a business do you leave and shop somewhere else?
I was on College Ave ordering take out. After entering and placing an order I saw the person preparing the food was not wearing there face mask properly. It was pulled down exposing their nose. I debated saying something but, left instead. I'm not is a high risk demographic. But I am in one of the higher than average risk groups.
When I was shopping in one of the large chain supermarkets and saw employees who were wearing face shields and no mask at all. Two other employees had their mask pulled down exposing their nose. At other times I have seen people wearing masks upside down or masks that just don't fit.
While I appreciate that these people are making an effort to prevent the spread of covid-19 the result is nearly ineffective.
If you enter a business where the employees are not wearing a mask properly do you just leave?
Do you have something clever to say to get them to wear a mask or wear their mask properly?
ThanksJun 1, 2020