Carroll County, one of two counties in Maryland that opened schools with a mask choice policy, reported approximately 45 net new COVID cases during the first week of school, or 0.17% of the total school/staff population.
CCPS outperformed other counties that instituted mask mandates, such as Frederick who reported 0.23%, and came within reaching distance of Baltimore County who reported 0.14%.
Carroll County Times, owned by the left leaning Baltimore Sun, was one of the first to report on CCPS’s 136 positive cases and over 800 quarantine cases in CCPS, but left those that subscribe to the Sun with improper context.
The 136 number reported on September 15th is a total of active cases after the first week schools were opened but is skewed by the 91 cases reported on September 8th that were reported before school started. The difference of these figures, while not exact, provides an approximation of net new active cases for the 1st week of school.
“You’d expect a much wider gap in positive cases if the mask mandate was truly effective”, said Bryan Thompson from Concerned Parents of Carroll County. “In addition to showing that mask mandates are negligible, the stats also show that the positive cases are extremely low across all counties even with Delta. It raises questions on whether the perceived benefits of mask wearing in schools outweigh the risks to students’ learning and emotional health.”
Thompson continued, “While 800 quarantine cases is an interesting figure, this is more a result of arbitrary quarantine policy, not the science behind COVID. Really what this shows is that, factoring the positive cases, roughly 700 otherwise healthy students were unnecessarily kept home. And based on the comparable numbers with other counties, this would have likely occurred regardless of masking.”
On September 14th the AELR committee voted 10-7 along party lines to mandate masks across schools statewide. Carroll County instituted the mandate the following day.
Concerned Parents continues to analyze the COVID data reported by Maryland counties to measure COVID policy effectiveness.