What are we doing to our Children 11?
Wearing masks in school is of no benefit to children but rather causes harm. Newsletter 3rd March 2022
Why are our children still wearing masks?
Why are our children still having to wear masks at school?--adults can decide whether or not to wear a mask-yet the age group least affected and least at risk, the children, are still being strongly encouraged to wear them in school.
The overwhelming body of scientific data shows that children are almost totally unaffected by the virus, whilst the research, including the Department of Education’s own ‘Evidence Summary' indicates there is no statistically significant effect on transmission of the virus by wearing face covering. And they are harmful in so many ways.
How can we justify the continued harm to children through a measure which has no benefit to them and accept the damage to their education and life chances, their psychological wellbeing and social development?
And negative effects are evident from early days according to Dr Mark McDonald, a child psychologist and psychiatrist, he reports that there has been a significant drop in the IQ of babies -up to 20 points, with 5 year olds showing a drop of 24% in IQ. Dr Macdonald goes on to say,“ their social capacity to express feelings and emotions and their attention span has been affected by being isolated and masked. “I see children who cannot make eye contact, can’t sleep, wet the bed, can’t be away from their mother” and he adds,
“Children are being trained to be afraid. Parents have transferred their fears and anxieties onto their children” He cites mask mandates and school closures as the key factors.
Verbal and non verbal communication between parent and children and between child and teacher is incredibly important and this cannot be done behind a mask
Teaching, and hence learning, relies on communication, the essential verbal and non verbal communication between child and teacher cannot take place behind a mask.
The same DfE Evidence Summary referred to earlier reveals the harm inflicted by face masks in class, 80% of pupils reporting that wearing a mask made it difficult to communicate, and more than half felt wearing one made learning more difficult and 94% of teachers felt that wearing face coverings made communication between teachers and students more difficult.
How can languages be taught, music, drama, groupwork, question and answer sessions take place behind a mask? How can a child with a specific difficulty be helped if both the teacher and child are wearing masks. All those non verbal cues which teachers use to gauge understanding are being lost.
A child’s capacity to express feelings and emotions and their attention span are being affected by being masked. Some children cannot make eye contact and can’t sleep, clear signs of psychological distress and of course, impacting on their capacity to learn. This is what the children are telling us. Referrals to schools’ counselling services have rocketed.
The message of masks is clear, there is something to be afraid of, children are being trained to be afraid, society has transferred its fears and anxieties onto their children. As Professor Heneghan (Professor of Evidence-based medicine at Oxford University) in his study entitled “Effects of Pandemic restrictions on Child Mental Health” reports:
“One third of all adolescents report problems with mental health, we are putting the problem of our anxieties onto children when actually the problem is with the adults and older generation.”
Despite the overwhelming evidence demonstrating the lack of risk to children from the virus and the ineffectiveness of masks and the clear evidence of harms caused by them, masks remain enforced in our schools. Why? It is time to put the children first.