Letter: Schools Closure vs. Open Boys & Girls Club At Higher Cost

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Like many parents and residents of Laguna Beach, I am exasperated and upset by how COVID-19, and the decisions of our governing bodies and public organizations, have negatively impacted my children especially how it has affected our schools, sports programs, and extracurricular activities.

I am a single working mother of three children. My youngest child has spent more time on Netflix and eating without proper exercise. Her school, socialization, and water polo-swim are all taken away from her and she is too young to be hanging out with friends at the beach or in town.

I was really looking forward to school being back to on-site/in-person learning and water polo to be back in season, but now school is going to be back online again with no sports.

A week ago, I discovered the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach is opening with limited space for $695 a month and will have the children from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Is that for parents who can afford it or for parents who have no other choices and are desperate for help? Either way, why is it OK for the Club to be open during COVID, but opening our schools is too dangerous? Let me get this straight, going to the Club is OK if they can afford to pay $695 per month and still be together, but going to school isn’t? I am very confused.

I think what is happening to our children is wrong, absolutely wrong. Not letting these children go to school and taking away their sports/extracurricular activities, a necessity for their growth and well-being yet allowing these children to go to the Club for a much higher fee is hypocritical to say the least. Shutting down Chad Beeler’s amazing swim and water polo program but still keeping high school water polo and swim open is wrong. So, if they are 14+ they can still be in water polo, but younger children are going to be deprived of their sports.

I am still trying to make sense of all of this. The ramifications of this in the long run and the damage done to our children seems to me far worse than any COVID risk (take a look at current accurate numbers and cases). Going to school with a mask and other precautions is much better than what is going on.

Monique Brown, Laguna Beach

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