Precautions essential as daycares, camps open

Ohio parents are likely breathing a sigh of relief knowing Gov. Mike DeWine has ordered daycare centers and kids’ day camps will be cleared to reopen May 31. That is, of course, important to those who will be able to go back to work this summer and need reliable, safe child care.

But safe is the operative word. DeWine’s plan includes use of $60 million in pandemic relief funding to improve cleaning efforts at day care facilities. Class size in those centers will be limited to nine per room — six for infants and toddlers. Temperatures will be taken daily. Employees will wear masks.

A new study by researchers at the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School suggests COVID-19 can seriously affect children, too; and that, in fact, the risk is greater than previously thought. Beyond that, we know even if children are not showing symptoms, they can still be carriers of the virus.

Let’s say one child picks it up from a parents who has been careless as he or she is out and about. Both parent and child are asymptomatic and the child brings the virus to daycare, passing it to another child. The other child carries it home to a family that includes a vulnerable grandparent … You can see why there are still worries. Kids are not the greatest at social distancing.

Thursday, DeWine seemed encouraged if cautious.

“We’re not exactly where we wanted it to be, but we haven’t had the huge surge we were expecting either,” he said, referring to the gradual reopening of our economy so far.

A return to the kind of normalcy that includes daycare centers and camps for our kids this summer means we must double down on taking precautions against the spread of COVID-19, if we are to keep it that way.


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