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These parents are using fresh air to stymie COVID-19. Here’s why

Parents are sending portable air cleaners for their classrooms

SHARE These parents are using fresh air to stymie COVID-19. Here’s why
Emily Jeter helps her son Eli, a kindergarten student, get his mask in Tulsa, Okla.

Emily Jeter helps her son Eli, a kindergarten student, get his mask on before heading into class at Jenks East Elementary School, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021, in Tulsa, Okla.

Mike Simons, Tulsa World via Associated Press

Experts have recommended using portable air cleaners to keep children safe from COVID-19 when they return to school.

How to keep kids safe in school to COVID-19

Jennifer Nuzzo, an associate professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said she brought a portable air cleaner for her son’s classroom due to fears of COVID-19 spreading there.

  • “Parents are feeling like they are not in control of the situation, and this is something they potentially could do to add peace of mind,” Nuzzo told CNN.
  • “They are not cheap, but they are not as expensive as some of the alternatives, such as private schools or hiring nannies,” Nuzzo said.

Why schools need better air

Joseph Allen, who directs the Healthy Buildings Program at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, also told CNN that schools should be working to provide better air.

  • “There is still plenty of time,” Allen told CNN. “And, quite honestly, if a school system or district hasn’t done this already, that is a signal that you have failed leadership. The strategies to improve air quality in schools have been out there for over a year. The resources are available. There is money available and it is not complicated.”

These warnings come as children have returned to school during the coronavirus pandemic. And some states have seen a massive surge of cases among children. Per NBC News, there are 20,334 students in Mississippi who had to quarantine after the first week of school, which ended last week.

Dr. Andrew Pavia, chief of the division of pediatric infectious diseases at University of Utah Health, said masks can really help children stay safe from COVID-19, according to the Deseret News.

  • “What we do know is that masks work best if everyone wears them,” Pavia said, according to the Deseret News. “They don’t work terribly well for the person who is wearing a mask if everyone around them is shedding virus. We do know that school can be safe in person but it can’t be safe if we don’t have universal masking.”