By Nicole Nielsen

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – With no vaccine approved for children under the age of 12, it’s believed the more contagious delta variant of Covid-19 could leave kids most vulnerable.

Especially with another school year on the horizon, where in most cases masks are now optional.

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“It’s very scary to think [masks] are going to be an option when we know that last school year that what is one of the things that helped to keep our students and employees safe,” said Rena Honea, President of Alliance AFT.

She represents the staff of Dallas ISD.

She says it’s no doubt that their younger unvaccinated students are of concern.

“Knowing that the hospitalizations in the last couple of weeks have come mainly from those people who have not been vaccinated, it’s very frightening for a lot of people,” said Honea.

For the first time, the CDC now estimates that the Delta variant makes up a majority of COVID-19 cases in the U.S.

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Dr. Carla Carreno, the medical director for infection prevention at Children’s Health in Plano says it’s spread is something districts will have to keep an eye on.

“The cases of the Delta variant in the United States are pretty much doubling. It’s really key that all eligible kids get the vaccine, but for the ones under the age of 12, all the mitigation strategies we are familiar with from last year, they need to continue,” Carreno said.

Honea says though Dallas ISD is on vacation until next week, she expects the variant to be a topic of upcoming conversation.

“I would certainly hope and pray that those discussions, if they have not already been started, will certainly be front and foremost as soon as they get back on Monday,” Honea said.

She also says, if the Delta variant continues to spread, mitigation strategies might once again, come into play.

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“I do think those are very real possibilities,” she said. “I think that our teachers are creative and professional, they’ll do what they have to do.”

Nicole Nielsen