According to John Balentine’s most recent column (“Follow the science and reopen schools,” July 24), “… kids (are) resistant to COVID-19 …” If Mr. Balentine believes this statement and, therefore, schools should reopen in the midst of the pandemic, I should like to suggest we employ a simple experiment to prove or disprove his thesis. For this experiment, we will ask all of Mr. Balentine’s school-aged relatives (i.e., son, daughter, nephew, niece, etc.) to gather in a single classroom with a person (or persons) who has (have) tested positive for COVID-19. These school-aged relatives (and the COVID-19 positive person) will attend this classroom six hours per day for five days a week, for a total of four weeks. Each relative will not utilize a face mask or employ social distancing. In addition, they will not use normal hygiene procedures (e.g., washing their hands). Following this four-week period, how many of his school-aged relatives will test positive for COVID-19? Mr. Balentine, are you willing to participate in this simple experiment and expose your relatives under these conditions? If not, then schools should not reopen in the midst of the current pandemic.

John M. Mishler
Harpswell