Thank you for this article [BCMJ 2020;62:338]. It is most interesting and highlights the importance of in-person education for our children. I raise only one point—are we forgetting about our teachers? Are they being put in a precarious position without the appropriate protections, consideration, autonomy, and appreciation? This remains my bias. The article suggests low risk on the assumption that preventive measures can be taken. Dr Bonnie Henry has suggested in a statement that “teachers know best [how to stay safe] in their classroom.” My assertion, though purely anecdotal, is that we are asking too much of our teachers without providing sufficient checks and balances to ensure that they remain safe. Who will be their voice when they feel unsafe? How can they efficiently and appropriately enact policy change to protect themselves and their families? Administrators vary with respect to ability to address necessary concerns. Social distancing, it would seem, is next to impossible to achieve. Teachers seem effectively neutered when it comes to implementing mask policies, and I suspect are confused as to why the policy should vary from a child in their classroom to the same child in a grocery store. I have often found myself counseling parents who are struggling personally that to most effectively care for their child (our patient), they too must take care of themselves. Should we not, as a community, be advocating the same for our teachers? If they feel afraid, unsupported, burned out, or unsafe, how can we expect them to take on the enormous responsibility of supporting, educating, and nurturing our children? Thank you.
—James Harris, MD, FRCPC
This letter was submitted in response to “Impact of school closures on learning, and child and family well-being.”
Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee
of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally
accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.
About the ICMJE and citation styles
The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.
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For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit www.icmje.org