NCAE hosts discussion with health experts about reopening schools
The North Carolina Association of Educators is meeting with members of the ABC Science Collaborative and Duke medical researchers to discuss strategies for safely returning students to the classroom during the coronavirus pandemic.
is we have, uh, hosted this call, um, and made it available to every North Carolina educator regardless of your role in school. Um, and wanted to make sure that you know that people are coming here from all over the country and from the beautiful state of North Carolina because we are part of the largest union in the country. In North Carolina, we call our union the North Carolina Association of Educators, and we are the only organization in the state. We are the largest organization for public school workers in the state of North Carolina, and we have been leading the fight for a safe re entry to school. Um, and we have been leading the fight to elect the best decision makers from the local to the national level. Um, and we have been fighting to make sure that we continue to build the organization and communities that can keep a safe, happy and healthy and when the schools that students and our educators deserve. And we are part of a union family of the National Education Association that has over three million members. And so we know that we need each other to do this work. We cannot do it alone. And it's important that when we do win big or small, it takes resource is whether it is physical, tangible. Resource is whether it's people resource is people labor. And so we encourage you to join us. Uh, here at N. C. E. As an active member or if you are not educated, that works in a public school. You can join us as a community ally for Onley $25 a year. Now, if you are an educator and you are interested in joining the N. C. A. A. You let us know because membership varies with your different roles and we'll be sure thio any one of us myself. Brian, any of our unit serves amazing unit served directors who are on the call any of our nce board members can you know how to join this organization? So But we are here to talk a little bit about science, and we're here to talk about safe re entry to school. So I want you to drop in the chat box or in the comments thread. If you're watching a live video, what are your biggest concerns about Cove it 19, what seems to be the lasting pandemic we're currently in and school reopening? What are your biggest concerns? And so I'm gonna look at the chat box, and I'm gonna shout some of these out. So we have transparency of information. I see that three times in a row. Y'all three times in a row. Ventilation staff, mass compliance, uh, contracting cove it from an asymptomatic student. Right. Schools contributing to community spread because we always talk about how schools are community. Right? Um, let's see having criteria for reopening that is credible. That's important. Proper cleaning supplies a dashboard of info for decision making. Uh, students at home tried to stay safe. Getting left behind, um, is a huge concern that we hear being talked about right in our state legislature and at our state Board of Education meeting. Right now. Let's see. Not everybody followed protocols. Okay, um, plant eggs. Let's see, um, employees air not told when students or colleagues test positive for cove in, Let's see numbers go up and no changes being suggested. So looking at the metrics and making decisions on that how students, service members, student services members, which is a division of N ce could safely support students without contributing spread. Let's see. Also students not being checked until they get to school instead of being checked on the bus because we know there are District's that Aaron plan A. Which means no social distancing, eso lots and lots of questions. And so we will be able to answer some of those questions tonight and talk a little bit more about the concerns that you have. And so we have hosting on this call the Duke scientists from the ABC Size Collaborative. And so I'm gonna kick it over to our vice president, Brian Profit Thio. Introduce them and I forgot to introduce myself. My name is to make a Walker Kelly elementary music specialist from public high schools and proud president of the North Carolina Association of Educators. So, Brian, the floor is yours. Que Tameka and Mika or Kevin Can one of you I'll take over letting people into the car go. All right. Good evening, everybody And again, like Tameka said, thanks for thanks for being here like you literally could be doing a million other things with your life. But you're here with us, and we're excited to bring this conversation, um, to as many people as possible. Onda The background that Tameka shared is is important because, as you all know, this is stuff that we've been wrestling with since March, and we've had a pretty significant dilemma, right? It's a hard time to be in a leadership position because one our number one priority is trying to figure out how to keep our people safe, right? That's our students, and that's educators. And we're in a situation where we don't have as much political power as we need in order to be able to just say, Here's what should happen and make it happen So that's a really that's a really significant part of the dilemma that we're in is that we actually don't have the strength to do that just immediately on our own, with the like, the way that the way that the balance of forces politically air set up right now, the second part of the dilemma is that we've had ah, pretty significant failure of leadership right from the level of, you know, principals in schools all the way up to the president of the United States and again some of that is, you know, in the midst of it, I know that there are lots and lots of stories of leaders in schools and school districts around this state that are stepping in and providing effective leadership. But the overall context of leadership in our whole society has been pretty lacking in terms of direction and and trying to figure out how to keep everybody safe. And so there's been a significant erosion of trust because people who are trying to keep themselves safe in the midst of a situation that doesn't feel safe, um, are now looking at the people who are decision makers and saying, Should I should I follow your lead going forward? Right? So I think that's another really, really significant thing that we've been battling here and in particular. There's this question about science, right? So very, very, very early on, Um, we were wanting to talk about. We were saying like, let's trust the scientists right, because there was this. There's and there's continues to be right, a debate about whether or not, you know, science, Israel cove it, Israel, Should we be marrying mask all this kind of stuff? So our position has been. We want to trust the scientists. But as you all know, that got a little complicated over the summer when the C, D. C. And the American Pediatrics started putting out a story that once the data came back and began, Thio seem to suggest that kids weren't getting it at the same levels they weren't transmitting, inasmuch they weren't having as severe of symptoms. Those scientific bodies then said, Great, let's go back to school, Right? So we were in this really terrible situation of being like we're pushing for people, the scientists, and then we have scientists who are looking at a picture and completely leaving us out of it, right? So it felt really, really amazing was that we got an email from these two people named Danny Benjamin and Tanisha Zimmerman and they we're starting and had been working on the ABC Science Collaborative out of Duke Thio. Figure out how to do some research and find some around this, and in the course of that, they were looking across the state of North Carolina and trying to find partners to work with, and they had lots of school district's to step up to relate to them and in the course of relating to them and trying to figure out what the landscape was to get things done. They actually stumbled across these calls that we've been having on Wednesday nights and they reached out to us and because they thought that this would be a good partnership. And y'all like the difference between Indonesia and the other scientists that we've been hearing is that when they heard, Oh, kids aren't getting it. Students aren't as much of a risk, aren't as much of a risk. Their answer was great. Now how do we protect the adults? And just that right made such a significant in the difference in the kinds of conversations that we've been having together. So we had, and I know a number of you are a number of you. All were on a big public call that we had with them about a month and a half ago, but but we're now wanting to make sure right that we get more people access to their the information and what it is they're talking about and provide an opportunity for people to go back and forth with some questions that we have and that we know that y'all are wrestling with because we've been hearing with We've been hearing them from y'all in our buildings in meetings that we've been in constantly for the last eight months. So the goals of this call right is to get our people access to more information because every time I talk to Danny and can Isha, I feel better and safer and smarter and more capable of being in the world right and being in the world safely. But past that, we also want to make sure that you all have resource is that you need, in order to be able to push for the conditions that we need on the ground in our schools. So in particular tonight, one of the things that we're going to focus on is a set of 12 points that they've arrived at. They say these are the things that schools need to be doing to keep everyone safe with so all that background stuff aside, I just want to say personally, that, like working with Danny and Tunisia has been, has been the most hopeful thing that has happened to art for our work. In the last 18 and it's a really, really, really pleasure Thio have them here with us and to be working. So like, we're meeting with them once a week now, right? So this this is our folks. These are our team. And we wanna we wanna make sure that you are getting access to the stuff that they have to share. So I'm gonna pass it over Thio Danny and Tanisha Thio do some some basics about who they are, and then we're gonna follow with some questions and go back and forth. So take it away. I appreciate you being here, right. Thanks, Brian. Um, just a quick note for everyone. Commission I have been working together for over a decade and a Z Brian mentioned We've been in frequent communication with Brian and Tameka, and so we tend to be on a first name basis. Plus, Casey and I tend to be ah, little more casual than most faculty members. So way tend Thio refer to each other by first name. I hope that's not offensive anyone. I'm distinguished professor of pediatrics, but most everyone just calls me Danny. And certainly anyone on this phone call is welcome to do the same. And I think, um, commission is going to start off with the presentation, so I'll have her introduce herself. Casey. Thanks, Danny. I'm condition Zimmerman. I'm an associate professor of pediatrics, trained in internal medicine and Pedes. And now I'm a pediatric intensive ist Andi. All the other things that Danny said are true eso I don't share with you. Our sides. It's just four of them. But I just wanted to give you guys kind of, uh, the bare minimum of who we are. And we're happy to talk more about that they're after. Uh huh. All right. Hopefully you can. Are you able to see that? Perfect. Alright. So the ABC Science Collaborative, a zany mentioned ondas Brian meant really was something that we put together. Danny and I kind of put together earlier this year knowing that there wasn't a lot of other stuff happening that was actually seemed organized. I thought that it was really, really important to try to move things forward, Um, in a way that was scientifically based on done away, that concluded both teachers and students on DFO families and communities. And so this is a public health initiative that you really unites science and schools to ensure safe work and learning environment. So one of the major reasons that we started this was because there are a lot of pressing questions about Cuba. 19, like parents have different questions from teachers and principals and superintendents, all of them valid, but all of them quite different. On DSO, we basically are pairing scientists and physicians with school and community leaders to help understand the most relevant and current information about Kobe. 19. We are funded by the N i H to do you, um this work, But, uh, started with an idea that was brought to the N i H to say, like, people really need help in moving things forward. Our team is made of scientists and Physicians University, School of Medicine, Do Clinical Research Institute and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. We have, um, adult physicians as well as a pediatric positions, people who are trained infectious diseases and community engagement, all kinds of things. Um, and really, the thing that we've been doing over the last little bit is to really make sure that there is a data driven approach to support decision making. We have been informing evidence based decisions by providing information to superintendent about what the actual science actually is. We've been coordinating the state health departments. We've had, uh, some close interaction with Brian and Tamika and their team a czar Stakeholder association. Liaisons we've also been delivering educational resource is we've talked a lot, provided a lot of materials available on our website that just kind of break things down. Um, you know why? Why do we ask when should we mask How far apart should we be? And what's the science behind all of that stuff? Um and then we also are interested in advancing public health. We are researchers at the core, and so have, um, mobile application that we've developed in order to help, uh, do some screening of kids and adults coming in the door, but also to answer really important questions. You I just told you what we are. But what I want to be clear about what we are not that is an advisory board for schools and said Bring tender. And so we're not making any decisions were merely providing information so people can make their own decisions. We're not an advocate for or against school reopening. Um, some situations they're gonna be going to school is gonna be good in some situations. Going to school is not gonna be good in some situations. We'll talk more about that as we go along. We're not a contact tracing infrastructure and we're not a government public health entity. Um, they're probably a lot of things that were not that I did not put on this list, but hopefully you get the idea of what we are and what we are not think that's my last slide, and I will turn it back over to Brian. You are so many things can Isha, it is good to know the things that you're not all right. So we know that you all have a lot on your mind and we know what some of those things are. So we're actually gonna gonna jump in and throw out some questions that we that we know are already on the table. So since the last time we talked to you all, there have been some significant public. Um uh um why did my brain just completely go away from me? A discourse around. Thank you. Thank you. Vaccines. Right we talked last time, there wasn't. There wasn't an emerging discourse about the near future possibility of vaccines. So a lot of folks from the start of this have been saying like, Well, we just gotta wait for the vaccines and and we know that that's a position that you all have been critical of. So can you can we just start with this question of vaccines and you'll have talked to us about where the vaccine situation is and why this is still an important conversation to be having, right, So I'll jump on that one first. Um, I happen to be trained and clinically and infectious disease. My PhD is an epidemiology, and I worked at FDA for a couple of years on DSO. When this type of question comes up, I tend to over answer. And then can. Isha swoops in and saves the day and tells the super relevant points. So if you kind of have attention deficit, your heroes coming, just wait. She'll be there for you. Okay, so the good news is we were extremely pleasantly surprised by the Pfizer and Moderna results. That's the new technology around M R N A. Okay and UM, it Z different from technology that we've used with vaccines before we anticipated results. Mawr, like what was seen with the AstraZeneca vaccine where the vaccine is very efficacy, is not quite so hopeful as what was seen with Pfizer. Madonna. That's the good news. There's 33 viable candidates that have cut cross the hurdle of boy on a risk benefit ratio. Probably good to get the vaccine. I personally will be getting the vaccine within the next month. I'm comfortable enough with the data that I will line up myself to get the vaccine. Okay, that's the good news. Unfortunately, there's some mixed news. The data are still early. We so we don't have a vaccine like we have years and years of experience that we can mandate people to take the vaccine. We just are not that comfortable yet with this with any of these products, we're nowhere near that point yet, so getting uptake in the community is going to take a while. It's going to take a lot. There's a lot of vaccine hesitancy. That's problem. Number one problem Number two is no child under 12 has received the product. That means people who can very much transmit illness are not going to be getting this vaccine in calendar year 2021. We will see some Children enrolled in vaccine trials and we'll see maybe Children under 12 enrolled late calendar year 21 in calendar year 22. Okay, so we're ways off from getting everybody throughout the system vaccinated. The folks at highest risk will sometimes be taken vaccine, sometimes not, and they will still be surrounded by people who can transmit disease taking vaccine. It looks like from the early looks to the data prevents severe disease. That's the good news, but we don't have 100% efficacy on getting infection and transmitting it. So someone again, we're gonna have people unprotected who are vulnerable to Cove in 19 in the public school setting, and it will be mawr than just calendar year 2021. This is the fundamental reason why we need to have a very thoughtful approach around establishing a culture of safety and a culture of trust so that the vulnerable populations that air in schools, which are largely the adults so that there's a safe work environment if we have a safe work environment. We will have a safe learning environment. Jay Z. I know you're going to swoop in and make this more on point. No, that was actually really good. I think you hit a good point. I'm writing this down home on E. Think someone put into the chat. You know, does this protect me from getting this or from getting a nasty case? I think just generally speaking, all the things that Danny said the goal is to prevent you from getting a nasty case. It does not protect you. The effectiveness, the efficacy that we're seeing that's north of 90% um is especially with nasty cases, not necessarily transmission of disease itself. So that was super helpful because again, it's been a conversation that a lot of our folks and it's been cool to see in the chat By the way, people are saying like it's cool to talk to actual doctors about this because it's been hard to sort to sift through. Um, So, given that we're probably a little ways away from having the kind of vaccine that that folks would would rely on in the same way that we rely on other vaccines to keep us safe. Um, you all are advocating then that we should we should open schools back up, right? That's what you all are Going to our school boards and telling them that we should open up the schools. No eso, uh, is this your on music? And that's what we're finding out. Is this gonna be me first? The whole time? I thought you were going to take some May 1st. That's what That's what we're hearing y'all when we say y'all when we say y'all's names and we talked to people about how excited we are about the relationship we're building collaborative, the first thing we hear is, Oh, those are the folks that came to our school board and our school board is saying we should reopen because that's what they told us. Yeah, So, um, so the bottom line is No, that is not what we've told any school board or any situation. We, as I mentioned in my very brief presentation, there are situations, um, in which going back and re opening school might be really good for students and for teachers and for everyone. There are certain situations when going back to school might be neutral and they're certain situations. We're going back to school, maybe bad and worse than the situation in general. Our job really is to provide information about the science so that people could make the decisions. Our job is also to provide information for if you go back, this is how you could do it in a safe manner. That is really what we have been talking with superintendents about. The other thing just to clear up is that, um, you know, we are interacting with probably a little over 50 schools, School District's across the state. There are different levels of interaction with ABC. Um, there are some situations in which we have on Lee met with, you know, the superintendent. A couple of times, maybe even one time they've been like one or two of our meeting. There are some situations where we've done an introduction three presentation to the board, those air what we call kind of just on the surface type of interactions. And we're not having meaningful conversations with people or really getting feedback from the district in order to help them have in order Thio interpret the information that they're giving us. There are other situations where we are talking to people on a weekly basis. We get information about what's happening at the schools in the schools, what problems people are having and are able to pride science to support how to improve the situation. Um, so just so that you are clear, there is a different spectrum, but all of that may be under ABC. Sure, sure. And in fact, someone just put in the chat Phoenicia that, like, news, news stories, even sometimes just say like, Oh, the ABC Science Collaborative came and said that it was okay to go back to school. Um, so can y'all unpack a little bit? Mawr, This notion that you shared with us around schools can be a positive influence on how this disease moves. It could be a neutral influence, or it could be negative. Can you all talk through that? We're so really what? You know, Casey and I started thinking through this over the summer, and it really struck us that in the school systems you have something that we face commonly in the hospital systems. That is, you haven't you have an infection control challenge in front of you and in the hospital system. We really struggled over decades to get our hands around, preventing the transmission of infection from providers to patients, patients to providers and providers to providers. Okay. And we had to put in place based on the type of infection we had to put in place certain protections to protect patients from getting sick from each other when they came to the hospital and getting sick from us. And so in the 19 nineties, when I was in training, if you were in a hospital setting on Lee about 50% of the time were the health care providers washing their hands prior to interacting with patients. Okay, which is disgusting. And over the next 20 years, as a community, we had to do certain things to make sure that the health care providers did the right things for patients to prevent patients from getting sick. And there's certain things that we did that year in and year out. They've worked all right. You face the same challenges within the school. People are gonna be coming in with infections. The goal within the school is to prevent transmission within the school. If you're going to open if you're going to be open, you're going toe. Want those things in place and we have a ton of experience for you to draw upon and those air the infection control principles in the hospital setting. If those principles are in place, then the school environment can be a safe place. If those things are not in place now, you're starting to take on risk. And if very few of those things are in place now, school is going to make the pandemic worse. Now, I know we have folks on from outside of the state of North Carolina and for some of us in the state of North Carolina, we almost take for granted that if you're if you if you're in the mainstream curriculum and you're walking through school, you need to have a mask on at all times over nose, mouth and chin with loops behind the ear. Okay, if we're not getting high compliance with Mass and all times by all humans inside the school building were asking for problems. We're going to be making it worse. Okay, at the other end of the spectrum and we've outlined based on some of our research, if we're following vary with strong adherence to the 12 principles and to the North Carolina toolkit. DHHS has a tool kit for schools to implement. If we'll use that tool kit and we'll use those 12 principles we can have is possible toe have a safe work environment. It's really, really key. It's just it's very, very similar, uh, toe other infection control problems. Thanks, Danny. That's a super helpful kind of unpacking of all that. And so you alluded to thes 12 points. So in a second, I'm gonna I'm gonna kick it over. Thio Tamika, Um, Thio kind of get you all into the into the 12 points conversation. Um and then what we're gonna do is come back and try to pull in some more questions that folks either on the front side or have been asking in the chat. And again, just to be clear, there's a lot of things that people are asking in the chat that are about, like, policy decisions that school board makes the school boards make like that. That's that's not in the purview, right of what Danny and connects you're talking about. So I'm probably going to try to keep the questions that we posed to them focused on things that are specifically aiming at a public health understanding of how how we operate here. So that said, I will throw it over. Use me some. Thanks, Brian. Eso You heard Danny talk about the 12 points and so we're going Thio. Actually, Danny Kennedy, you're going to share these 12 points with you eso just to give you a little bit of background because not everybody was on this call with us when we did it earlier and or when we started in these calls back in July. So as an organization, we have continuously organized and centered around a safe free entry to school. And we started in the summer with three very easy asks, um that one. We wanted to make sure that all the requirements that were outlined by DHHS were funded by the General Assembly. We asked that the General Assembly hold harmless school district's for the upcoming school year. Um, and we also which is the most important part. We wanted to make sure that as an organization with organized educators in locals all across the state, that we be at the table along with other stakeholders like parents, um, and other community groups to make decisions about safety in our schools, in our communities. And so, as the conversation around school reentry safely has evolved, we have also been responsive to the things that we're hearing from our members and educators. Broadly, right? And so we have been listening to your concerns about when, uh, school districts were allowed to move to plan A right. We want to make sure to keep educators and students safe. And so we've asked a different set of changing demands. Right? We looked at the metrics numbers, which many of you also are office are monitoring all the time, right? We've talked about in 95 mask, especially for educators and schools who are on Plan A with no social distancing right. We've talked about types of supplies. We've talked about having good air filters and ventilation and school buildings, and so in our conversations with Danny and can Isha over the summer, we have been able to convey these concerns directly to them, and so the they have come up with these 12 points that we believe help create a culture of safety for places that are going to reopen schools and make and have adults and students in the building. Um, and so one of the things that we know is that by looking through the 12 points that the ABC size collaborative has created schools, districts that are doing these things, um, can say for certain that they are working in collaboration with them. And so I'm going thio turn it over to Danny and Tunisia to go over these 12. What? Danny, do you have that anti? Sorry, Casey, let me on. Mute. So Right. So the first, uh, the first one really to talk about on this data transparency and wait, Danny, can we Can we Can we put these up? 12 of them. Do you all have? We all have it sitting in front. I think that might have been. What condition was that? You got a condition? Uh, I didn't hear the question Is Aziz clearly is Kadisha Asset. Uh, Okay, Casey, you know, I'm not good at putting up stuff on zoom calls. E can barely. All right, So the islets alternate. Since I started on transparency, I'll take the odd numbered ones. Okay, So transparency is really important and it's, um no leader wants to see there whatever entity that they lied as having a problem. And so transparency around the number of infections is very, very important. It is the a number of infections by school. Bye week. Now, when you get into more detail reporting than that, you can run into confidentiality problems, especially in smaller school and in smaller school district type settings. Um, but transparency around the number of infections by school bye week is very important. And I think from a employee or a patient perspective or from a parent perspective, um, this is knowing the number of infections really is key. Um, Misha, Alright. I'll just ask you a quick question about that. Um, the number of infections tell me about, like, what kind of infections you're talking about and is that involved here? It may be involved elsewhere, but the type of infections that you are talking about because, you know, we've said over and over there is gonna be infections in the community. There's gonna be infections in schools, but there are gonna be some important points about those infections in schools. Yeah, so, um, it's test positive in writing documented in writing test positive so it could be verified for Cove in 19. And those fall into basically two big types. One is community acquired, that is, I come into the school. I'm in third grade. I have Cove in 19. I come into the school. I'm associated with the third grade class in elementary school. That is a primary infection. If then I get my classmate or my teacher infected, that is a within school transmission that within school transmission is really what we're looking to avoid. Sometimes folks called a secondary transmission okay, so that within school transmission is really what I'm looking to prevent. And when we say a safe work environment, it's preventing that child to child child thio, adult adult to adult or adult to child transmission. Within schools, though, that determination should be made via contact tracing. But with the local health department that plays a key key role here. Great. So the second one is actually that making a roadmap for contact tracing and for testing. It's really important for people to understand what the health department is planning to do, what an exposure actually is and how it's accounted for, and This is part of the transparency in a different way, right? Like you need to understand. Is the teacher orders the staff member. Is that person actually exposing me? Or did that person actually exposed me or are they not actually an exposure? And having a detailed plan for how that happens needs to be done in conjunction with the health department on, do you know? And that's gonna be probably at the superintendent level, doing that information and making sure that's very transparent. And I see that there is a question about essentially, how does one prove it? Um, look what we're talking about with contact tracing is is in perfect. It's in perfect, but it is. The combination of contact tracing and testing are the best methods that we have available to us and like much like many other things in life, is fallible. Now develop a dashboard. The district's should include not only just numbers, uh, not only primary cases on clusters clusters or five or more cases with with a link between the cases, um, but also secondary transmission. Now this kind of dashboard is, um, it's a considerable effort for schools, and when we are working with School District's. We've got School District's that maybe have less. Resource is financially at their disposal. And here we're looking for I'm kind of a best effort on communication between school leadership and, um, folks that are within the schools. We know that in other infection control settings, as we kind of learn to communicate effectively with each other, it can take a while. It takes practice to learn how to communicate effectively, and doing that via dashboard can take a while. For school District's to dio on DWI Just what we're looking for here is that they are headed in the right direction, and making progress on this sort of thing to the next one is, um, implementing lessons learned so they when there's a cluster or when there is evidence of secondary transmission, there should be kind of a breakdown and go back to the drawing board about what happened and how we might be able to fix it to make sure everyone understood the event and Thio really be able to kind of implement the changes that are necessary. And I'll say that we've got some we talked Commission talked earlier about some school districts that are all in and really working hard. And, for example, in August and September we had some secondary transmissions around the pre K environment and one of the school district's because, um, that particular school district, in accordance with what was then DHHS policy, allowed the pre K Children to not wear Mass. They learned that you wanna have the pre K Children wear masks, and they also learned that they could get those kids to wear masks. And that's within that school district is now their policy. And they shared that lessons learned with other school district's within the collaborative. That's what we mean. You know, when we say break it down and learn lessons, it's not only for your own district, but to share it. Um, with with other district, um, work working with a third party to analyze data. Um, so we've got a number of school districts in the state that are sending us, um, their data for both primary and secondary transmission and are being open about that and having, um, the Health department adjudicate those numbers and then having a third party. Um, look at those numbers where you know I'm not. I know, uh, Tameka is employed by Cumberland. It's gorgeous, but I'm not right, Um, and whether it's really hard to fire somebody like me that not employed so I'm would feel free to speak to what I'm seeing that independent evaluation, whether that's the A B, CS or some other group, um, it needs to be a trusted third party. Andi, That's helpful with these types of with this type of work. So the next one is leveraging available metrics. Um, didn't I may ask for a little bit of additional assistance with us. I saw a lot of questions and things in the chat about metrics. Um and I think all of the things that you guys said, all right, the metrics, they're changing. They're changing all the time. Um, that's one of the reasons that using community metrics makes this really hard to figure out what to dio. We've learned a lot over the last. You know, several months we always knew that kids could transmit co vid. We always knew adults could transmit coded. We they have learned from Europe and from other places in the country that if you're doing things appropriately, you don't have to necessarily transmit cove it in the setting of schools, regardless of what's happening outside of the school building. So based on that information, um, it's increasingly obvious or increasingly, um, reasonable to think about using schools specific metrics to guide what's happening and how successful your school and your district are actually being. And as Danny mentioned, the primary measure of that is secondary transmission and cluster. Because if there's gonna be co vid in the United States, there's gonna be covert in communities. There's gonna be covert in schools. The code doesn't have to go from one person to another inside the school building. Danny, do you have other things to add there? Um, yes. So one of the things that, um, you can see from the early data in North Carolina is just how much Mawr Cove in 19 there waas in private schools compared to public schools. So despite um, having less than despite having only about 10% of the student population in North Carolina, private schools had the majority of clusters of cove in 19 in the first nine weeks of instruction. If you are seeing the kinds of transmission and those kinds of clusters UM, it doesn't matter if the percent positive tests in the community are 1% or 20%. Multiple clusters is a problem. You really want to take a look and what's happening. If you are seeing a bunch of secondary transmission or clusters inside of schools or inside of a district we know from experience from the from districts that were opened in the first nine weeks, that success is possible. We also know from some schools, either in the private sector or in other states, that you can have a lot of secondary transmission. So the key metrics really are what's happening within the school or within the district and these things linked together that is, transparency around data. Independent adjudication by health departments for what's primary versus secondary transmission? Independent Third party kind of looks at what's happening and then making decisions around how much secondary transmissions going on. Those things work together for joint accountability and for safety, and when one of those things starts to break down, you can start running into trouble. These things really work well together. I think I'm up for acknowledging pandemic fatigue so again, really, we want to target greater than 99% adherence to masking by mainstream curriculum students, teachers and staff on school property at all times except for water and food. Um, and there are we know from experience that there are times when folks will be like, Gosh, really, I don't wanna wear this anymore on defy Ting that what we call pandemic fatigue is gonna take real effort. And this is really where culture of trust and safety work together. So you're gonna want to be able to be in a situation where staff know that if they bring problems to the attention of leadership that that that that we're gonna work together for solutions. And so there's certain things that we're gonna want to see There, for example, the ability to do bring anonymous concerns forward. Okay, the ability toe have checks, Um, by folks. Um, e no. There's some districts that are doing this. They're having folks from inside and from outside the school come through to check on mass compliance rates. Now the adapted correct what we call in Chapel Hill. The adapted curriculum. Some folks called the regional curriculum that's very behind needs kids. That's a more nuanced discussion, but the mainstream Children in the mainstream curriculum we would really need are going to need to see hat high mass compliance over a prolonged period of time. Um, the next one is make a detailed schedule, eh? So I think that this goes along with a lot of the things we've been talking about. Have a plan. So you know what's gonna happen bussing when kids get to school, how they're gonna move throughout the school. What's gonna happen at lunch? How you're gonna oversee that? How you're gonna make sure people are going to stay safe. How do they get out of the school and how do they get home? All of those details need to be present in order for, uh, you know, people to feel confident that you have thought or your school has thought about the safety of people coming to moving through and getting out of the building. And, you know, seven and eight really kind of worked together, and they really work well with or can work well with the North Carolina. If you're for for folks in the state of North Carolina, the state's tool kit, right. Those three items together could work can work well together. Um, and then we're learning from other states. Utah's a really good example of this. Georgia has some examples of this where extracurricular activities particularly sports, um could be a riel, cause for spread both at school and in the community. Um, you can see this with not just sports, but also with the arts a zit relates thio singing and wind instruments. So you're gonna want to see special protocols in place that are consistently here, adhere to, um, in those extra curricular activities. And there are some district's that are doing this quite well. Um, and there's some district's, especially outside the state of North Carolina, that air seeing some really, really problems on in these areas to the next one, um, relates to Children in the adopted curriculum or what? What it means to calling the adapted adapted for kids from thes teachers. And the students are going to need extra precautions. And many of the cases uh, these Children are not necessarily going to be able to mask. Um, that may mean that there needs to be potentially additional distancing if you're gonna. If your district is going to spend money on h back and those types of things. This is the place that you might want to think about spending it because of the inability to mask, uh, in this population or in a large proportion of this popular Okay, um, a communication plan around cases and secondary transmission and clusters right when we will see, even in even in the best systems. Alright, we are gonna have breakthroughs. And as much as we try to minimize those breakthroughs, we'll see some. And how do we respond to those and successful district's take those breakthroughs and they learn from them and they don't go out to like on a on a punishment rampage. They use it as an opportunity to collect information to really get their facts in order to really revisit the details of their policies and to communicate clearly about this is what happened. This is why we think it happened and you know, as applicability this is how well do things differently. And we've got a couple of school district's, um, really, quite frankly, do that quite well. And then the final one is walk and then run. So this really is about making sure that you have a plan and that you can implement the plan when the risks are potentially lower. So that may mean starting out in the hybrid, uh, situation so that you can make sure that you people are gonna mask. Make sure that you have all of your daily schedule. Um uh, figured out. But once you've proven success in that model will have successfully been able to go to plan A or move towards plan A if they're able to do all of the things we've been talking about. So that's the big Prosperous. And that's why starting slow is really, really important. I'll turn that back over to you, Brian and Tomeka. So many in condition. Thank you for sharing these 12 points. And can you briefly just shared. So we know our educators in our school personnel are SPS are admin. Um, they have been tasked with more things than its sustainable. So all are all of these 12 points? Um um resting on the educator alone? No, this is really about teamwork. Andi, Um, can Isha I saw you start. Take yourself off mute. So, um, maybe you can fill in the blanks or you're gonna You're gonna leave me on this one, Okay? This is really about teamwork, right? We cannot have this all on the backs of one group. Um, if I'm in this situation of of looking, uh, what's happening within my distract, this is a handy a piece of paper. Uh huh. For me to kind of be able to look at what's happening in my district and say, uh, you know, I can see I did this with Weight County Monday and Tuesday, and I went through and reviewed each of the 12 principles and where they were. And, um uh, they had asked me to do that. Their leadership had asked me to do that. Several of the teachers had had reached out to me and asked me to do that. And I was invited by the Board of Education, um, to do that and so we can walk through. And we can look at different websites that that particular district has. I said, Oh, here's their infection reporting. Um, here's their work with the A B CS Andi. People could see that evidence as we were walking through their list of 12 in real time. Um, here's their plan for the arts and extracurriculars. Here's what they were doing for, um, special needs. Okay. On dso on. Then there were one or two things where I said, Gosh, as I look at what you're doing, um, maybe having a little more clear communication on these one or two points might be something for you as a community. Um, toe, look at okay. And just like, I could do that as somebody outside the district, if I'm within the district, I can look for evidence of that. And, honey, I'm on the phone call with a lot of people, okay? Can you talk to Mom about that? Okay. Well, I'll be done in them. It's out of love. Him. Thank you. Have you limit yourself? Yeah. Okay. Sorry about that. The S O was a little distracted there, So anyway, so I can just as I'm Ah, if I'm within a district, I could do that exact same thing. Okay, Andi, uh, it's not some of these are, quite frankly, in the ballpark of policymakers and, um, superintendents and school boards. And some of these are things that we do together as a community. Right? As a parent, I've got to be on board about pandemic fatigue. You know, when my 13 year old who just ask me about baseball but he does if he doesn't wanna wear a mask, I gotta be good. Parents say, You know, honey, Lou, we're putting our mask on. I'm putting my mask on your putting your mask on. We're not voting about it. We're going to school with our mask on. Or just like, you know, he's in the remote environment now, honey, or logging onto the computer. That's what we're doing, all right, and it's we've got to be in this together. Thank you for raising that point. So wanted toe let you all know that these 12 points that Danny and Tanisha are presenting to us they're not our job alone as educators toe undertake. And it has been our work since the beginning, when we started talking about reopening school safely. Uh, that it is a collaborative effort from every level of school personnel to our own communities, to our parents and community allies is that it's going to take all of us just like we care for our school communities. We have to implement these practices to execute community care as well, And so how do we How do we win these things, right? How are we able to get these 12 points implemented in our school district? Well, you know, it's not Magic is organizing is gonna take organizing with fellow educators with our school boys, with our superintendents, with parents to make sure that our school district's implement these 12 points. Right? And we have, of course, our organization N c e uh, to do that. And so many locals across the state have been organizing around safety measures, and we need to continue to build up this organization with your voices as educators who are on, uh, in the classroom, whether it be virtual or face to face, who have firsthand knowledge and experience. You are the experts of how this is working in our school district's. And so again I would just say this again because this is an open call and we never miss. The opportunity to build our membership is that you can join us as an educator at every level, every public school employees or as a community ally. And so I'm going to kick it to Brian Now who's going Thio, take some questions that you have been dropping in the chat box toe ask of Danny and condition. Yeah, and real quick to make. I think I just want to speak to, like, you know, again, just just in the same way that I think that that Danny and can Isha have kind of put themselves in vulnerable situations by going to school boards and sharing these things because they know that the next day in the newspaper, someone's going to say, Hey, they told us to go back to school like this. This feels pretty vulnerable here. Y'all as like the union leaders to be to be having this conversation and it and I want to speak to, like, a part of it that that maybe folks, um don't, uh I promise you all were listening and we know really, really, really well that the reasons that you all have for mistrusting school leadership, sometimes in your building, sometimes in your district, sometimes at the state level, right, it's like, yeah, we've been getting treated poorly for a really long time, and people have been under paying us and under resource ing us and expecting us to do mawr with less for a really long time. They have not been transparent with us for a really long time. They've not involved us in decision making for a really long time. So all of those things pre existed, this right, and this has made it even worse. And then you add in the potential for death, right? And the kinds of sicknesses that we've been watching our folks go through as a result of this. I promise y'all like, we get every bit of that and we know we're taking that seriously. And that's what we're trying to figure out right now is like, How do we actually in this moment, figure out how to put some solutions in people's hands? And so for us, it feels really exciting after months of kind of scrambling to try to figure out what some potential demands could be. We kind of land at organized educators have to have to be at the table, and now we have these 12 points right and we can move these 12 points with our school boards. I promise you all. We're doing everything we can to move these 12 points at the state level. We've got folks from from the Enea involved trying to move these points at the national level. So this now is the thing we're trying to use, right? So just to just to, like, acknowledge, like y'all we hear you, we know you're going through it, right, And and And we're trying to figure out how toe get us all some solutions to work with here, right? So there's some really important questions that I think have been, have been asked, and I wanna I wanna pose them And just just to say to folks like we're gonna we're gonna do ah hard stop at seven because we know people have lots to do with the rest of their lives. So we're going to do about 20 minutes more of questions. And again, I I think there's a lot of things that you all have put in the chat that we've been hearing now for months. And so I think it's the kinds of questions that people are asking are are the ones that are on everybody's mind, right? So first there's a thing that that someone raised in the chat about the what? Why is it that the governor is saying that we can have gatherings of 10, right? We can't have gatherings of more than 10 inside, but we're waving that for schools. So I want to actually head that one off of the past and say that you all aren't the ones advising the governor on his on his decisions about either that or schools. Right? But I do want to speak to because I've heard I've heard you all speak to this before. Is there evidence to suggest that plan A eso I will start? Um, I will say that in Europe, European countries have done a pretty good job of prioritizing schools. And the way that they've done that is to close other things down. Throw in some ways, this, um, transition may mimic that I'll be in in Europe, they're like, really closing other things down, like you could go to work and you could go toe school but like bars and things like that aren't open. And that's to try to calm the community, spread in order to make sure things are that kids can't actually go to school, and teachers and staff can actually go toe work, and everyone could be in a safe situation. Um to that. That's I guess, the first thing, the second thing, Um, about going to plan a safely. So I think there are some key things. One e I think they're all aligned with the principles, right. Like knowing what the actual what the principles are aligning. The principle is making sure that you're following them is gonna be key to do that initially so that you can progress to plan A. There is increasing evidence regarding Thea's amount of physical distancing that may need to happen in the setting again of masks and with hand washing that 3 ft might be okay from. And it might be safe from a scientific standpoint. So whether it's plan a plan B or whatever, you know, there there is some scientific evidence to support that in the setting of doing other things correctly, a shorter distance might be okay, Danny. I might be, Yeah. So let me take on two points. One is about data, and then the other is about 3 ft versus 6 ft because I think folks will hear more and more about 3 ft versus 6 ft and all, um, provide some context for that. So about the data. Casey and I got 11 school district's who were, um, early not only early adopters for the 12 principles, but early openers as well. Okay. And those superintendents agreed to, um, share lessons learned in a weekly phone calls and to open up their data, tow us to review so really tip of the hat to those 11 school district's in those 11 school district's they when they were in hybrid instruction, Uh, they were successful and very successful in preventing secondary transmission. How should we interpret that? And how should we not interpret that? Okay, well, you interpret that is Hey, here's some 12 principles Based on practical experience of some successful district's. Here are ways not to interpret the data. The data Don't say you should open the data. Don't say that a school district on the other part of North Carolina or the other part of the United States should open. Okay, they simply mean is if you will take and implement these policies, it is possible to be successful. It's number one the second way. It's naughty to interpret these to say we should all go just planet. Okay, plan A might work, but the data were from the hybrid environment. Now many of those same district's have agreed to push over, plan a data, tow us, and we've agreed to accept those data throughout this second nine weeks of instruction. But we we are not comfortable talking about Plan A in a public setting. Before we started talking about the hybrid data, we got the data from the district's we personally called up the folks who collected some of that data. We got in touch with some of the folks from the various health departments. We went through a Siris of steps before we put our names to those hybrid data. Okay, we have not done that for playing a data yet. Okay, Planning might be really, really good. It might be successful. School District's that succeed in hybrid are the kind of school districts that are likely to succeed in Plan A. But our data do not say plan A is the way to go. They just don't say that. Sure, sure, and 6 ft versus 3 ft. Real quick. Brian The Americans. There was a meta analysis done around distancing and how far away we should be now. This equation is completely changed with mass. Okay, so this is I'm unmasked and your unmasked No mask for either of us. Okay. The w h o interpreted those those data to say, Hey, really 3 ft is important. The Americans, Some Americans interpreted that to say, Hey, 6 ft is important. Okay, so from the get go, there's been some disagreement around the distance. I'm unmasked your unmasked. Okay? Yeah. A group has recently put forward, um, analysis of the way some of the Americans looked at the data and track through to say, Hey, the Americans made a mistake in some of their assumptions and the w h O interpretation of the data is correct. Fundamentally, I think it is. It's not settled, I think is the fairest way to frame the 3 ft versus 6 ft. Um, the most important thing is putting on the mask. It's super key. Okay, because it's the mask that prevents the spread, uh, beyond a few inches. Uh, toe 12, 8, 12, 18 inches from one's face. Okay, it's the masking this key. When I saw patients today, I saw a number of patients where I didn't know whether or not they had co vid they hadn't been tested. I was wearing a loops around the ear mask. Um, the ones who are, um, kind of in the mainstream curriculum type Children they were wearing cloth mass I was not wearing in 95 Mass. I saw a couple of kids who would be in the adapted or regional curriculum. They did not have a mask on. I had on my regular loops. Behind the ear. You said, I'm a little I'm still uncomfortable. It's a more nuanced discussion for the adapted curriculum because the teachers are spending a longer period of time with those Children. Then I'm spending with those Children. Um, inside the clinical environment. I'm getting very, very close to those Children. Close enough toe look in their ears, listen to their stethoscope. Amusing. Very similar kind of mask. I'm not using it in 95 mask. I'm very close to them, but I'm not spending as long a period of time with them. And that's one of the reasons why be adapted curriculum is a more nuanced discussion. Sure, and I think I'm just actually I wanna build on that last thing that you said Danny, because I think one of the one of the ways in which people are pushing back publicly and saying that educators air overreacting in our effort Thio, stay safe is that people are saying, Well, well, people can go out on DBI in the, you know, being a store, right? Or, you know, people can go out and grocery shop, right? Why? Why can't we go back into schools, right? Like, why do you all think that you're better for them? Better than them? So I think that last thing that you named about the amount of time they were spending feels important. Can you unpack that a little bit as well? Sure. So I think what Really what's really important is that a number of things go into viral transmission. So when I'm in the room, you're in the room. Several things help protect me. Okay? The amount of distance I am from you, the amount of masking that you and I both have. Um the fact that we do hand hygiene, ventilation, whether we're inside versus outside. Yeah. If I'm in a setting where I'm within 6 ft of you at times, okay? And I'm indoors and ventilation is not good, then I'm really reliant on masking to help protect me if I'm in that same situation and we have high compliance around masking. All right, I'm much more comfortable in that situation. But if I'm in an environment where I don't have the support from leadership around mask adherence and this is this is why it's a culture of safety and trust for the long haul. This is why this is so important. Okay, is that it's not just to get me through January of 2021. It's not just to get me through March of 21 right? If I'm a teacher, this is my life's work. I'm gonna be here in 21. I'm gonna be here in 22 day after day. I've got to be in a community setting where I can rely on the people around me to do the right thing. It's super super important. This is not a one month goal. This is not a six week plan. Oh, no, no, no. That's that. I just didn't know if there was ah, finishing thought. You know that. And you know, I think that you're you're mentioning. And in our conversations with y'all, you know I know that you're thinking about it broadly. Like use the language of teacher just now. Right? But like, this is bus drivers. This is custodial staff. This is cafeteria staff, right? This is like and I think one of the things that we're trying Thio that feels that feels like the conversations with y'all has helped us to kind of like wrap our heads around a little bit is this notion of a culture of safety and trust and that if we had that in school, right then it would make the situation that was happening in the rest of the society a little bit more negligible, right? But given that we're in this moment right now and again, I don't I don't think that y'all are gonna have, like, an answer that's gonna feel especially satisfying for folks on this question. But I do want to raise it just because it feels so important, right? With with the rates of increase community spread that are happening right now, right, this sort of third surge or spike that we're in, right? People are having a lot of anxiety, right, because we don't have any control over what happens outside of school, right? And so for us, this is like what we're trying to figure out is the sphere where we do have some some influence and you all named, you know, earlier, like the difference in data thus far between public schools and private schools, which to us sort of in the same way that as you're looking at, you know, when we walk into a restaurant or something that's private, privately owned, we don't have that same kind of ability to say, Hey, masking has toe happen here. It's going to be enforced in that way. So I don't know if there's a thing that that, you know you could say that would help ease people's minds. But can you speak to this like we're in this moment of a massive surge? And that's causing people understandably a tremendous amount of anxiety? And yet we're also saying we can do schools safely or relatively safely. If we do these things so like, that's just kind of a tough contradiction. Toe hold and I'm just gonna be mean and throw that at y'all to see what you do with it, because I don't know that we you know. But I know that a lot of folks on here are really wrestling with with that because, irrespective of how well we maintain things on our bus is in our cafeterias. In our schools, we don't have any control over what folks are doing outside. Right? And that's one that's really, really hard for us. Eso Can y'all take that up a bit? Can Isha is this Is this me to start and you tow finish or you two started me to finish and start? Yeah. All right, so one of theirs, too. 22 items that just kind of start with. Okay, if I think about in a five day week, if there's if, on average there's eight hours of sleep which for most of us there's not. But let's just to make the math easier, okay? That leaves us with 80 hours. If I spend all 80 of those hours out in the community and 40 of them I spend and kind of, um, moderate activity and 40 of them, if I'm 20 years old, I spend drinking in bars, going out to eat in restaurants, going to parties with my friends on a public health level, I'm increasing my risk of infection and across the community, If a bunch of us do that, we are at increased risk. Mhm. If I take those 80 hours a week and I spend them in typical activities, whether it's, ah, grocery shopping or what have you gonna have Kind of the community level of risk. I take those 80 hours and I spend them in a place where mass compliance is 100%. We're 90 some odd percent, and I'm staying distant and hand hygiene is enforced. Okay, Those 40 hours I'm at a safer. This is a public health, I'm gonna say for experience across the population. We're talking about decisions that are made across thousands of people. Okay, now is an individual. No matter what situation I'm put in, I can always make foolish decisions to put myself at higher risk. I can run around without a mask on. I can drink a bottle of frontal lobe disinhibition and go off and do stupid things. Okay, But from a public health perspective for a population perspective, if I've got a situation where I know that the people are going to adhere to masking into distancing and the hand hygiene from a public health perspective, Putting people into that environment is ultimately a good thing. Now let's take that to schools. If I'm in a school district where there's high masking and high hand hygiene and and and distancing okay, schools being open can be a good thing. And on the other hand, if those aren't happening, being in school is gonna make it worse. Casey. Yeah. So Brian E. Guess more directly. And the answer to your question You're very difficult question I'm gonna answer with. We don't have clarity as to what? That metric number any of those things are. And there are a lot of reasons for that. The available data that we have both in North Carolina And, um, you know, across the country, you know, things that have been published. There is a wide range of new cases per 100,000 of of, you know, percent positivity, even here within the state, ranging from, you know, 4% to 20% at times. And it has not necessarily predicted whether or not people have been successful in preventing secondary transmission. You know, there's been a lot of comments about not having, um you know a substantial amount of testing to verify all of those things. But the testing within the school building is gonna be similar or maybe even better than the testing outside of the school building. Because you're still relying on the same people to do the testing, ri