Students Ride The Highs And Lows Of COVID Waves
• Hope for COVID surf to settle down for spring and summer season.
As COVID-19 nears its two-year mark of being declared a pandemic, society has gotten used to its rises and falls. Throughout the pandemic, cases have at times risen rapidly and, sooner rather than later, fallen seemingly even faster.
Omicron ravaged through the United States and the rest of the world over the past two months, and people yet again are in the now familiar feeling of expecting a large spike.
The Omicron variant brought with it the largest number of cases in the world thus far in the pandemic, yet cases fell rapidly through the end of January and the beginning of February.
Due to this fall in cases, states, counties, and municipalities around the country have begun to roll back COVID mandates and precautions. More than 10 states, including California, have rolled back mask mandates; many other states never had mask mandates in the first place.
Gov. Gavin Newsom’s mandate requiring masks indoors expired at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday. Los Angeles County, however, has decided to stray from the state’s guidance, only choosing to lift the mask mandate that was formerly in place for “outdoor mega-events.” This means that masks will still be required indoors in Los Angeles County.
This is California’s second exodus from mask mandates. Governor Newsom previously ended the mask mandate in June of 2021, but he chose to reinstate that statewide mandate in December of that year. Los Angeles County has maintained stricter protocols than Newsom throughout most of the pandemic; the county has gone just a little more than one month without mask mandates since masks were first required in early April of 2020.
Confusion regarding these mandates is aplenty. People continue to be confused as to which level of health department gets the final say in the mandates. In this case, Los Angeles County overpowers the state of California.
Palos Verdes Peninsula schools were miraculously able to make it through the Omicron surge without shutting their doors to in-person learning. Now that winter is nearing its end, hopes have emerged that schools will not have to worry about going virtual and, hoping that COVID never reaches these levels again. Also, the past few months have shown that many schools can remain open even when COVID cases reach historic levels.
Society will once again try to return to a pre-pandemic normal in the wake of Omicron. Certain mandates are being lifted slowly but surely, and hopes remain that COVID will soon be a worry of the past.