In a recent publication in The New England Journal of Medicine a team took a look at how the lifting of mask mandates in Massachusetts schools in the US had affected the COVID transmission. They used the fact that some schools lifted that mandate sooner than others. According to their findings the schools that lifted the mandate earlier saw a level of infection level that was higher than that of the schools that still had the mandate in place by "an additional 44.9 cases per 1000 students and staff", or roughly by about 4.5%. That is much in line with what I would expect as the top limit of the usefulness of these masks. No surprises there.
But, among other conclusions, the researchers state the following:
Our results support universal masking as an important strategy for reducing Covid-19 incidence in schools and loss of in-person school days. As such, we believe that universal masking may be especially useful for mitigating effects of structural racism in schools, including potential deepening of educational inequities.
No, I can not logically interpret this. I guess I don't speak "woke". Unless findings pop up that indicate that there is reason to think differently, the COVID-19 virus is race agnostic and stopping it is just as beneficial to someone who is Black as it is to someone who is Oriental or Hispanic. So if you are a reasonable person you would think this has nthing to do with race, and you would likely be correct.
But this is the science of today that we, of course, are expected to trust.
Lifting Universal Masking in Schools — Covid-19 Incidence among Students and Staff(archive)
Tori L. Cowger, Ph.D., M.P.H., Eleanor J. Murray, Sc.D., M.P.H., at al, The New England Journal of Medicine, 9 November 2022