Respecting Science at Keystone High School

Respecting Science at Keystone High School

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Jacquelyn Ralph started this petition to Keystone High School and

To Whom It May concern,

My name is Jacquelyn Ralph and I am a senior at Keystone High School. As class president, I have contacts with many students throughout the entirety of the school, not just my grade. The general consensus, I have learned, is that a large percentage of students are scared to return to school during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many students have family members who are immunocompromised and subsequently more at risk of developing severe symptoms and or hospitalization should they come into contact with the COVID-19 virus; my mother, for one, has very serious asthma and heart disease, so I take being exposed to COVID-19 extremely seriously. I understand that one of my peers, a great and respectable friend, Emma Gregory, has already emailed Superintendent Mr. Daniel White on the subject and I would like to emphasize how accurate everything she said is. The only notable information I can add to her address to Superintendent Mr. Daniel White would be that I have not spoken to one student, or teacher, who has thought it is a good idea to return to school on December 7th, 2020. While all of the teachers I have spoken to want for their students to return and for everything to go back to normal, there is a unanimous undertone to every statement, most people are scared to return, not for themselves, but for the people they love and live with that are much more vulnerable to the virus. 


Here I will recap some of the integral reasons and why it is so very important that we do not return that Emma Gregory states in her email to our superintendent Mr. Daniel White. Lorain County is currently PURPLE, how this has been overlooked in the decision to return to school is astounding (as I am composing this I have just received news that it was decided that all students will be returning to school on Monday, December 7th, 2020). While the spread of COVID-19 is notably lower in schools, does not cover the fact that, according to an article by the Association of American Medical Colleges, "You can only open your school safely if you have COVID under control in your community," (Benjamin Linas, MD, MPH, Associate professor of medicine and epidemiology at Boston University School of Medicine) and specifically regarding Lagrange, Ohio, we do not have the spread of COVID-19 under control, especially when a large portion of the community is not taking the mask and social distancing mandates seriously. They even talk on the topic of high school students and how they are much more susceptible to the virus because of how often they associate with one another outside of school, which is not preventable by any school.


I hope you take into consideration all that I have written because I do take COVID-19 extremely seriously, even though the community clearly does not. It is astonishing and upsetting to me that we could be returning to school at a time like this with such blatant disregard for science. Wearing masks is vital to contain the spread of COVID-19 and the number of members of the community I see without them is concerning. I believe, and I do not only speak for myself when I say this, that we should not be even thinking of returning to school until the entirety of our beloved community respects each other enough to commit to wearing masks at all times in public. 


Thank you so much for your time, 

Jacquelyn Ralph

jacquelynralphpetition@gmail.com

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