As a community, we have been doing an incredible job adhering to the guidelines and rules that OSSE, the CDC, and DC DoH have in place. Thank you to our students, families, and staff for all you are doing to help keep us safe!
I find myself constantly thinking about the positive COVID cases in our community that did not lead to any transmission to the close contacts in their cohorts. This always comforts me and reaffirms that what we are doing is working! That being said, we have to keep in mind that even with vaccines on the horizon, the pandemic fatigue is increasing by the day and we must continue to be extra vigilant with our precautions in light of the new variants. We must continue to wear masks, practice physical distancing, maintain proper hand hygiene, and avoid indoor time with those not in your household, etc.
Research is being conducted on the different variants (UK, Brazil, and South Africa), and why these variants are more transmissible and whether or not they are more lethal than the COVID-19 we have been living with for the last 10 months.
With so much still unknown, we recommend that families invest in mask filters for their family’s masks. Luckily, there are a lot of masks, including the Aidan Montessori masks, that have filter pockets. Here is an amazon link for insertable mask filters. If you don’t want to purchase mask filters, you can use vacuum cleaner bags or coffee filters instead. Please refrain from purchasing N95 masks, which should be saved for hospital workers. The N95 masks are not meant to be worn for several hours at a time, and require professional testing to determine sizing. KN95 masks are a good alternative to N95 masks as they are made from a similar material. KN95 masks that can be found on amazon using this link.
Again, I thank all of you for the work you do every single day to help keep us safe. Please continue to stay safe and healthy and if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me!