Special circumstances. I am an only child, and my parents have health conditions that put them at a risk of getting very ill. Who is going to take care of them if I am at college? Not their siblings, who are also high risk, and not my grandparents, who are in their 80s. What happens to students who suffer from underlying medical conditions? What about graduate students and nontraditional undergrads who have children? What if elementary schools do not reopen in the fall or close midsemester? What if we see more young children develop COVID-related Kawasaki syndrome?
Worst-case scenario. The death rate for university-age students is estimated to be about 0.2 percent, and the hospitalization rate is estimated to be 2.5 percent. At a university like mine, with a student population of roughly 13,000, we risk having 325 students sick enough to be hospitalized and 26 students die in a worst-case-scenario outbreak. Our professors, though fewer in number, face even higher hospitalization and death rates.
Is this a price we’re willing to pay? If the decision were up to me, I would say no. If a vaccine or effective treatment were developed between now and January, such deaths would be entirely needless.
A student writes an open letter to administrators on her concerns about reopening campuses in the fall (opinion) https://t.co/Pa7jmDofFa
— James F. McGrath (@ReligionProf) June 15, 2020