At the High Court hearing today, 30 April 2021, it was revealed to the Court that neither the Tapton School Academy Trust (which runs 4 secondary schools) nor the government had conducted any assessment of the risk of harms from requiring children to wear masks in schools.
At the same time the Court received unchallenged evidence that wearing masks could result in causing pulmonary fibrosis, being “among the worst diseases that can be suffered or witnessed. It kills exceedingly slowly, by ever-thickening matrix formation, a kind of scar tissue, obstructing the alveoli and reducing their air exchange. The illness worsens over time, and suffocates the victim very gradually. Nothing is available to the sufferer from conventional medicine.”
Also unchallenged was evidence of psychological harm suffered by children because of the pressure upon them to wear masks and the need to conform to the authority of teachers and their peers.
Against this background, the child (whose name and school remain subject to a Court anonymity order) asked the Court for an order stopping the school encouraging mask-wearing by children.
Roger Ter Haar QC (Sitting as a Deputy Judge of the High Court) has reserved his judgment but indicated he expects to provide his decision in writing by next Wednesday 05 May 2021.
My take on it
Tapton Secondary School is located in the UK, so I gather that this action is proceeding in the High Court of England and Wales.
I have my own view as to the wisdom of wearing masks in response to Covid. Those views have been formed by examining some of the arguments and evidence for and against.
Not everyone who does take that approach, reaches the same conclusion as I have.
And of course not everyone takes that evidence-based approach.
The question is, Should we expect that evidence-based approach from government?
Of course we should.
And should we expect that evidence-based approach of those who are entrusted with the care of our children, and specifically schools and teachers – in loco parentis?
Of course we should.
To me it is unsurprising (if disappointing) that an institution such as a school should just follow government guidelines unquestioningly. I witnessed the same attitude early last year when I contacted aged care institutions in Australia in an effort to forestall what I saw coming. They pointed me to the government.
The government formally holds that trust. The government is all the more responsible for weighing the evidence for and against any policy; for assessing the probable and possible impact. The evidence is that in this case the UK government did not.
That is a breach of trust.