Latin America opens schools despite fears over US experience | Society | America Edition

Several Latin American countries are experiencing the return to school of their children and young people today, despite the fear generated by coronavirus infections that have occurred in classrooms in the United States and that contribute to the continent being the most affected in the world. world for the voracious disease with 10.5 million cases and 388,000 deaths.

In Latin America, where according to American John Hopkins University there are 5,157,394 patients, the state of Amazonas, which had its health services and funerals broken due to the pandemic, became the country’s first territory to reopen on Monday. public schools after five months without face-to-face classes.

On the border with Colombia, Venezuela and Peru, its capital, Manaus, today receives about 110,000 high school students who returned to public schools after achieving apparent control over COVID-19, accounting for 3,384 deaths and 3,384 deaths in the state . 107,197 confirmed cases of the disease.

Brazil, with 3,057,470 infected, is the second country in the world with the highest number of infections, behind only the United States, which has already reached 5,071,306.

The Amazon today joined San Juan, which is the first province in Argentina to resume classes after school attendance across the country was suspended in mid-March, just days after the start of the 2020 school year.

This northwestern Argentine district is the one with the least number of cases of the virus, with only 22 of the 246,499 infections confirmed in the country, which led the national government to promote, together with the local authorities, the return to classrooms under a strict protocol of biosafety. .

Thus, some 10,500 primary and secondary school students have returned to classrooms in 14 of the 19 departments in San Juan.

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FEAR OF CONTAGION IN THE USA

Both in Brazil and in Argentina they received the students despite the nervousness caused by their children’s illness, as happened at the North Paulding High School, in Georgia (USA), whose image with the crowded corridors of students, he went viral last week.

This educational center revoked its decision to resume face-to-face classes and announced that it will return to online education for at least the next two days, after informing on Sunday that it has nine cases of coronavirus.

But Georgia’s is not the only report of infections in US schools where there has been a 40% increase in cases in the last two weeks of July, with just over 97,000 new infections, according to a study by the American Academy of Pediatrics, which highlights the risk of reopening classrooms starting this month.

Between 16 and 30 July, cases among young people rose from 241,904 to 338,982 across the United States, which represents an acceleration in the rate of contagion among minors and young people, population groups that have hitherto had a lower incidence of disease.

According to the report, carried out jointly with the Association of Children’s Hospitals in 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, the infection rate was 447 cases per 100,000 inhabitants and represents 9% of all COVID-19 cases. detected in the second half of July.

PANAMANESE CHOOSE PUBLIC SCHOOL FOR LACK OF MONEY

In Panama, education was the first thing that came to a halt as a result of the pandemic in the second week of March.

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A few days later, non-essential trade was ordered to be closed, a measure that continues five months later and which agonizes the economy with the consequent loss of the population’s purchasing power.

Therefore, when public education was restarted at the end of July, after a period of curricular and technological adaptation to teach distance classes, many parents decided, for lack of money, to take their children out of private school, which they never gave up looking for. of virtual platforms, and register them in state ones.

One study showed that less than 30% of Panamanian families can currently pay tuition from private schools, 35% said they can partially pay it and between 35% and 40% can no longer afford it.

However, teachers consulted by Efe guaranteed that “the country’s public network does not have the physical or curricular infrastructure to absorb so many children. They are not hiring teachers and the law establishes a maximum capacity of 35 students per classroom, but there are schools that even they do not have this ability. “

GLOBAL NUMBERS DOWN

With or without fear, the truth is that more and more countries in America are preparing to resume classes based on figures from the World Health Organization (WHO) that indicate that daily cases have dropped.

In total, today there are 19.7 million infected on the planet and deaths from the pandemic reach 728,012.

Despite these devastating figures, the number of new daily cases has decreased slightly so far this month, from about 300,000 on August 1 to 280,000 a week later.

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Worldwide, in addition to the United States and Brazil, Mexico (475 thousand cases), Peru (471 thousand), Colombia (376 thousand) and Chile (373 thousand) make up the list of nations most affected by the virus.

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