Dangers in our schools

| December 9, 2020 1:00 AM

At the height of a deadly pandemic, the Whitefish School District Board of Trustees has voted to place children, teachers, school employees and their families at risk of death by returning to full time in person classes. This is nuts. With thousands of active cases in our county and 39 deaths, how can any educated leader push children together with the potential of spreading the disease instead of maintaining temporary virtual schooling.

Trustees have the responsibility to oversee the education and safety of our children. They also accept the legal and ethical responsibility to make informed fact-based intelligent decisions. Any trustee who questions the science behind COVID should be removed from the board.

In addition, board minutes state they will “consult the Flathead City-County Health Department (FCCHD) and health providers and will monitor external and internal indicators to help guide decisions.” Consulting the anti-science unreliable FCCHD is ludicrous.

While U.S. medical experts are recommending increased safety actions, masking, and practicing CDC guidelines, Flathead County leaders have failed. They have disregarded hundreds of local physician and healthcare provider demands for masking and social distancing and refused to follow Gov. Bullock’s essential recommendations.

I thank the Flathead City-County Health Officer Tamalee St James Robinson for trying to make a difference. She resigned from her position due to the indefensible lack of fact-based decisions made by FCCHD and Flathead County Commissioners.

Hospitals and healthcare personnel are stressed and at capacity. We do not have adequate testing. We can all help by wearing a mask, social distancing and washing our hands. These are simple measures to slow virus spread and save lives. Virtual education measures are temporary. Death is permanent.

The Whitefish City Council has tried to institute national and state recommendations, but local anti-science anti-masking activists are making Whitefish and Montana, the Last Best Place, a dangerous place to live.

Dr. Betty Kuffel, Whitefish