Students wearing masks leave the New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math (NEST+m) school in the Lower East Side neighborhood of Manhattan on Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021, in New York. Credit: Brittainy Newman / AP

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The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends masking in schools in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The trouble is, a study that the CDC based its recommendation on found that COVID incidence rates from schools with mandated mask policies among students was “not statistically significant compared with schools where mask use was optional.”

In  another study, an examination of multiple random controlled trials by Tom Jefferson, et al. for the Cochrane Review Study noted “uncertainty about the effects of face masks,” and added, “the pooled results of randomized trials did not show a clear reduction in respiratory viral infection with the use of medical/surgical masks during seasonal influenza.”

Childhood is an important developmental phase when language and social skills play an important role. Kids learn by facial cues from others what emotions are being relayed. Children with special needs or those on the autism spectrum are especially reliant on those facial cues for cognitive development.

I feel that, in an attempt to do the right thing for children, we could be harming them in the long term. We should let kids be kids and do without the masks.

Kevin Landry