There haven’t been any outbreaks of COVID-19 in schools throughout San Francisco, CA, since students resumed in-person learning on August 16.
The politicizing of mask mandates, misinformation about vaccines, and overall confusion regarding COVID-19 has made the return to in-person learning even more stressful for students, parents, and educators. Some states have gone back and forth on the legality of mask mandates in schools — like in Florida, where school COVID outbreaks have taken the lives of over a dozen educators in less than a month — while school districts in other areas of the country are not only mandating masks, but vaccines for eligible students as well. San Francisco’s recent report that there haven’t been any outbreaks in schools since reopening for the 2021 school year is yet another example of why wearing masks and having eligible people vaccinated is the only way we are going to keep people safe, gain herd immunity, and downgrade COVID-19 from pandemic to a much milder childhood endemic.
The San Francisco Department of Health released a statement on Sept. 9, saying that “COVID-19 cases in children under 18 has remained less than 20% of overall cases throughout this pandemic. The vast majority of COVID-19 cases have been in adults.” The department noted that 90% of children 12 to 17 attending San Francisco schools are fully vaccinated. Anyone else seeing a trend here?
The statement also outlined resources provided in conjunction with the high vaccination rates among students, which include “free vaccinations for all eligible individuals; testing services; critical guidance and support to schools on COVID safety measures; and case investigations and contact tracing at schools.”
There have been some cases of COVID in San Francisco, but the “vast majority” come from environments outside of schools.
San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) reported 227 cases out of nearly 52,000 students and 10,000 staff members. This breaks down to a 0.37% infection rate, for those wondering. The San Francisco Department of Public Health defines an outbreak as “three or more cases in non-related households in which the source of infection occurred at the school, and not another setting.”
“Vaccinations are our best defense to protect children,” the statement adds. “The majority of pediatric COVID-19 cases in San Francisco were from an unvaccinated adult in the household getting COVID-19 and transmitting it to their family members, including children.”
This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, which is why it is so frustrating to hear that eligible adults are still choosing not to get vaccinated for selfish reasons based in pseudo-science. And in case you (or any of your loved ones) need more convincing that vaccines save lives, you can show them any one of the many videos of infected adults fighting for their lives in hospitals begging others with their literal dying breath to get vaccinated.