Daily Archives: July 11, 2020

COVID-19: Back to School?

I have friends who are teachers in Maine and New York state, and family who are teachers in Ohio and Georgia. There’s a great deal of uncertainty about the upcoming school year, and lots of concern over COVID-19. One of the crucial aspects of re-opening schools is the current state of the pandemic. Of course it’s only one factor in the school decision, but it is a crucial one. With that in mind, let’s look at these four states and assess how ready (or not) they are to deal with COVID-19.

In my opinion, in order to loosen restrictions, re-open the economy, and/or consider re-opening schools, a state should be in the “green zone” — no more than 40 cases per day per million population. At that level, cases are few enough that contact tracing can work its magic to best effect, stomping out flare-ups before they get out of hand. Contact tracing, and a mandatory mask order, are how you stay in the green zone.


New York is in excellent shape: the green zone.

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COVID-19 Back to School: Is Georgia Ready?

In my opinion, schools should not re-open unless the case load (the number of new cases per day per million population) is under 40. I call this the “green zone.” At that level, effective contact tracing really works — that, and a mandatory mask order, is how you stay in the green zone.

The latest 7-day average for the state of Georgia (as of July 10) is 279. That’s in what I call the “red zone” (> 250). It means “red alert.”

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