Masks

Education secretary defends school face masks U-turn after Tory backlash



a little boy looking at the camera: Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA

The UK education secretary, Gavin Williamson, has defended the government’s U-turn on pupils in England wearing face masks in schools after coming under fire from Conservative MPs over the move.

Just hours after the cabinet minister Alok Sharma said on Tuesday morning there were no plans to review the policy amid pressure from headteachers, the government performed an about-turn and said pupils would no longer be advised against using face masks in secondary schools.

Related: From face masks to Covid testing: 11 times the UK government has U-turned

Instead, in places with high levels of Covid-19, such as lockdown areas including Greater Manchester, children in year 7 and above are now being advised to wear face coverings in school corridors where social distancing is more difficult.

The move – which came after Scotland confirmed secondary pupils must wear masks in communal areas,

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Two top CDC officials step down; Birx urges Americans to wear masks indoors and outdoors

Two top officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were moving on and angry Democrats were calling out the U.S. Postal Service leadership Sunday as the U.S. COVID-19 death toll that inched toward 170,000.

Kyle McGowan, the chief of staff, and Amanda Campbell, the deputy chief of staff, had worked side-by-side with CDC Director Robert Redfield, including the last eight tumultuous months as the virus overwhelmed the nation.

“Amanda and I spent more than two years serving at the CDC and chose to leave to start our own business,” McGowan said in a statement emailed to USA TODAY.

A sliver of help may be on the way for the relentless coronavirus testing issues hampering efforts to slow the U.S. outbreak. This weekend the Food and Drug Administration approved a saliva-based test that Yale University researchers hope will clean up some of those testing issues.

“This is a huge

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New saliva test a ‘huge step forward’; Birx urges Americans to wear masks indoors and outdoors

A sliver of help may be on the way for the relentless coronavirus testing issues hampering efforts to slow a U.S. death toll that inched toward 170,000 on Sunday.

The average number of daily tests across the nation has begun to fall, according to the COVID Tracking  Project. Delays sometimes stretching to a week or more in obtaining test results have severely disrupted efforts at contact tracing. And when results are finally obtained, accuracy issues have often delayed proper treatment.

This weekend, however, the Food and Drug Administration approved a saliva-based test that Yale University researchers hope will clean up some of those testing issues.

“This is a huge step forward to make testing more accessible,” said Chantal Vogels, a Yale postdoctoral fellow, who led the laboratory development and validation along with Doug Brackney, an adjunct assistant clinical professor. 

Here are some significant developments:

📈 Today’s numbers: The U.S. has 

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12 fun kids’ face masks for the COVID-19 pandemic

 <span class="copyright">(Micah Fluellen / Los Angeles Times)</span>
(Micah Fluellen / Los Angeles Times)

With in-person school just starting for many children, face masks have become the new backpacks in terms of being necessities for at least 2020 and 2021. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children 2 and older “wear masks in public and when around people who don’t live in your household.”

As the world adjusts to life in the age of COVID-19, it’s safe to say many parents are probably adding fashionable face masks to their children’s back-to-school shopping lists. Although students in Los Angeles may be confined to online learning, kids in other states are returning to the classroom, for which the CDC also states, “Appropriate and consistent use of cloth face coverings is most important when students, teachers and staff are indoors and when social distancing of at least 6 feet is difficult to implement or maintain.”

We’ve rounded up

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Karavel Shoes Donates 3D Face Masks to Schools, Famous Footwear and Coach Make Big Donations + More

Aug. 11, 2020: Fashion-comfort retailer Karavel Shoes in Austin, Texas, is doing its part in the prevention of the spread of COVID-19. The family-owned business is in the process of printing 1,200 3D face shields to be donated to staff working in 15 schools located in low-income neighborhoods in Austin. The store also hired three high school students to work on the project. In addition, said Karavel owner Rick Ravel, the store will be selling additional masks to consumers with all proceeds from their sale donated to the Central Texas Food Bank.

Aug. 11, 2020: Famous Footwear has announced a new multiyear partnership with Ticket to Dream, which provides opportunities for foster children across the country. As part of the move, the brand is donating more than 12,000 new pairs of shoes this month to foster kids ahead of the back-to-school season and plans to provide supplies throughout the fall.

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Hundreds quarantining in Ga. school district; masks optional at Sturgis motorcycle rally

Florida, ravaged by a historic spike in COVID-19 cases for weeks, is showing signs of progress in statistics such as hospitalizations and positivity rates according to its governor — but stories of the human toll of the virus on young and old in the state continue to emerge this week.

In one case, a 21-year-old who believed he had recovered from a mild case suddenly became gravely ill with multi-organ failure. He’s now sharing his story as a warning of the potential for long-term illness.

And in a heartbreaking story, a 90-year-old man likely caught the virus as he said his final goodbye to his dying wife. After his story gained international attention, he also tested positive and later died. His family says he had no regrets.

Those stories come even as other areas of the country have gone months without serious outbreaks. In South Dakota, low case counts have

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21-year-old’s organs fail after mild case; masks optional at Sturgis rally; Trump may use executive orders on stimulus

Florida, ravaged by a historic spike in COVID-19 cases for weeks, is showing signs of progress in statistics such as hospitalizations and positivity rates according to its governor — but stories of the human toll of the virus on young and old in the state continue to emerge this week.

In one case, a 21-year-old who believed he had recovered from a mild case suddenly became gravely ill with multi-organ failure. He’s now sharing his story as a warning of the potential for long-term illness.

And in a heartbreaking story, a 90-year-old man likely caught the virus as he said his final goodbye to his dying wife. After his story gained international attention, he also tested positive and later died. His family says he had no regrets.

Those stories come even as other areas of the country have gone months without serious outbreaks. In South Dakota, low case counts have

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Target Is Now Selling Adorable Kids’ Face Masks for $2 a Pop

From Good Housekeeping

As the novel coronavirus pandemic surges on, the demand for face masks has some retailers scrambling to make more — and sometimes, finding a mask that’s actually in stock and ready to be shipped is tricky. Medical-grade surgical masks are in tight supply as healthcare workers on the frontlines in hospitals and clinics are facing a shortage of supplies; while these surgical masks and N95 respirators are designed for a single-use, many doctors, nurses, and essential staff are reusing them anyway.

This is why the Surgeon General Jerome M. Adams has urged the general public to stop buying PPE. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that N95’s are the most effective in protecting those treating infected patients, but for those who are not in a medical setting, they’re actually rendered mostly ineffective without a fit test. All this being said, it makes more

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Delta Flight Forced to Turn Around After 2 Passengers Refuse to Wear Face Masks

NurPhoto/Getty

A Delta flight was forced to return to its gate after two passengers refused to wear masks onboard amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

A spokesperson for the airline told PEOPLE in an email statement that the plane “returned to the gate following two customers who were non-compliant with crew instructions,” before adding that the plane departed to its destination “after a short delay.”

According to Delta’s website, “Delta customers and employees are required to wear a face mask, or appropriate cloth face covering over their nose and mouth throughout their travel, aligning with best practice guidelines from the CDC.”

RELATED: United Airlines Warns It May Layoff Half of Its U.S. Staff, 36,000 Employees: ‘A Last Resort’

MATT CAMPBELL/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport

The incident occurred a day after Delta’s CEO Ed Bastian said that passengers who refuse to wear masks will be banned from flying with the airline.

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How U.S. Soccer turned old jerseys into new masks for frontline workers

Deep in the bowels of the-19th century Chicago mansion that serves as the headquarters for the United States Soccer Federation, several hundred decades-old U.S. national team jerseys hung on storage racks, gathering dust.

Some of them had been worn in games by the biggest stars in modern men’s and women’s national team history. But even after a December 2019 purge during which the USSF sent many to the former players whose last names were emblazoned shirts, much of the inventory remained. Three months later the global Coronavirus pandemic hit, and with it a shortage of personal protective equipment for front line workers. An idea was born: maybe the old jerseys could be turned into functional, virus-mitigating face masks.

Led by its chief medical officer Dr. George Chiampas, U.S. Soccer had already started working on a number of COVID-19-related initiatives. Now federation staffers found themselves lurking on Esty, an online marketplace

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