Letters to the editor

Vote for schools

To the editor:

I am writing to urge readers to vote for the Bainbridge Island Schools’ levies on Feb. 9. These two levies – for enrichment/operations and technology – are vital to maintain present funding levels for public schools.

As a parent of BISD students, I see the benefits of the levies every day. When COVID forced us into a remote learning model, the levies helped BISD maintain enrichment programs like art, music and science while the tech levy provides laptops, classroom technology and infrastructure to enhance online learning.

Bainbridge Island takes pride that we prioritize public education. Vote for the levies to ensure that our students and teachers maintain our extraordinary record of success.

Charles Costanzo

Bainbridge Island

Safe reopening

To the editor:

To reopen schools safely the Bainbridge Island School District must implement a testing program that tests everyone, every three days. It’s really that simple. Test students, faculty and staff every three days.

The error of BISD’s pilot program is that only symptomatic children are tested. Because COVID -19 is transmitted mostly by people who don’t show symptoms, this places our island directly in the path of outbreak.

Recipe for outbreak disaster include: children are most often asymptomatic, teachers are exposed at greater rates, and we have a large elderly population.

On Jan. 25, BISD returns children back into school rooms. Children who show symptoms will be tested at school and specimens will be sent off to a lab (Curative) which has been identified by the FDA as producing excessively high numbers of false negatives.

Curative Labs is the lab at the center of the Los Angeles Schools testing program that is now experiencing horrific pandemic conditions.

In our pilot, COVID -19 test results are issued to families in 48-72 hours, which is long past the time when kids and their contacts are at some of the highest levels of viral transmissibility. (Incidentally, if you thought little kids don’t get it, the variant (B.1.1.7) has escalated its attack rates on children aged 0 – 9 by + 43.5%)

We need a study design that uses a rigorous testing program to protect the island from outbreak. The Rockefeller Foundation has a terrific back to school by March 2021 plan. Let’s implement it.

Cynthia Bellas

Bainbridge Island

What if?

To the editor:

Pretend just for a moment, that this week’s criminal insurgents had been all black or Middle Eastern.

Just ponder that.

PJ McEwan

Bainbridge Island

Approve levy

To the editor:

For 15 years I’ve been working with special education students at BHS. I am so grateful for past support from our community to invest in technology.

Chromebooks and other tools have enabled us to continue teaching our students during the pandemic. Because we can speak with our students, see them online, view their assignments and give them our guidance, education has continued.

I hope fellow islanders will join me in renewing the Tech and Operations Levies that will be on the ballot Feb. 9.

Mike McCloud

Bainbridge Island

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