Vaccinated or unvaccinated? The Covid controversy

On January 14, 2022, Pascack Hills High School Interim Superintendent, Daniel Fishbein sent an email to parents and students about the new Covid 19 regulations in school settings.

In the email, Fishbein listed the number of positive cases last year and the CDC’s new rules the school plans to follow.

A graph displayed in an email sent out by Superintendent Fishbein around the return from winter break.

The CDC provides daily updates on the recently changed Covid-19 guidelines. The guidelines explain that if an individual is fully vaccinated and comes in close contact with another individual who tested positive but have not experienced any symptoms, they will not have to quarantine or isolate. The question of controversy being whether it is fair for vaccinated individuals to not have to quarantine.

After three long years of isolation, the public has been told by numerous health care professionals that getting the Covid-19 vaccine will help everyone develop immunity to Covid without us having to get the illness. Bodies need to be exposed to germs to grow immunity, this way we can continue doing normal things while keeping them from getting sick.

As a student attending Pascack Hills High School, I think the only way back to normal is by treating this virus like any other. Although, as cases continue to go up, the classrooms are disrupted with virtual learning and quarantining.

A week-long quarantine for a teenage student with schoolwork can be a major inconvenience. Mandates are being lifted and schools are easing up on their policies. Within Pascack Hills High School, parents and staff have expressed their concerns about the unnecessarily long quarantine. Even experts say that it makes the most sense to reduce quarantine time.

In theory, a negative rapid test and no symptoms should be enough to return to school like normal. So, if a student feels healthy, they should be able to decide for themselves if they should quarantine or not.

The reason for the shorter quarantine is because the CDC says Americans are “provided with protection by the vaccine and the booster” and the percent of people testing positive from community transmission has gone down tremendously since the vaccine.