As School Days Loom, Confusion & Alliances Make Mud Out Of COVID Policies

As the COVID Delta variant rages through areas large and small throughout the country, debates about universal masking in schools have been heated at local school board meetings. The mask debate has dominated local news coverage as each school district heads back to school.

Heating up the debate here in Bucks County, PA’s acting health secretary called Bucks County’s reopening advice ‘inconsistent and alarming’ on Monday evening. Earlier this summer, advice came out from Buck’s County officials suggesting optional masking. It has since been reversed.

Even with the newly updated guidance from Bucks County Commissioners and Health Department, local school board meetings have been and will continue to be fraught with division over the passing of updated Health & Safety Plans.

The guy who seems to be in the middle of all this is the county’s public health commissioner, Dr. David Damsker. He has been quoted as saying schools should plan to treat the coronavirus ‘like other illnesses’, and previously provided guidance that children with positive COVID results could return to school after 24 hours of being fever free (definitely not CDC guidance). He also told a day care center to not have parents report COVID cases, according to reporting from WHYY.

Where this gets interesting is his apparent (while not explicit) connection with the ReOpen Bucks folks who are anti-maskers. They have been whole-heartedly supporting his non-CDC compliant advice. There is lots of tea spillin’ on twitter about the connections.

Check out #DitchDamsker for more juicy posts. We will keep an eye on what happens next.

Emily Smith

Emily Smith

Emily Smith is the Chief Operating Officer of the Bucks County Beacon. She is a seasoned design professional with nearly a decade of experience in strategic communications. Emily has spent nearly two decades working with startups and small businesses. Beyond her design chops, Emily is a creative problem solver, and business strategist. She has also owned her own graphic design firm since 2003, working with nearly every imaginable client including small businesses, giant corporations, non-profits, and community organizations.

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