My daughter has been in school three days so far this school year. Every school day, our entire community has received an email from the superintendent of schools stating that there are new COVID cases affecting students and staff at all, or almost all, of the schools in the district.

This is from today’s email:

As stated previously, I realize that our school community has varying viewpoints on COVID-19 and specifically on mask protocols. We are going to continue to make decisions in the best interest of safety for our students and staff. In only three days of school, we already have had 21 positive student cases and 10 positive staff cases. It is essential that we stay vigilant and monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

I live in a mid-sized town, and each school is pretty small, and most of the elementary schools have no air conditioning. The kids are being allowed to take off masks for “excessive heat” reasons, due to a loophole in our governor’s COVID masking mandate and due to incredible pressure by a vocal faction of parents. My wife and I believe this attitude about masks is cavalier and dangerous. We hate the idea of sending our daughter into this environment with a vaccine, and also hate the idea of pulling her out of more school because being away so long already has not been good for her mental health. All of us are frustrated and exhausted by all of this, and there does not seem to be an end to the pandemic in sight.