MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Mobile County Schools announced today they will be keeping students at all schools inside during the solar eclipse next Monday.
Out of an abundance of caution, Mobile County Public School Superintendent Martha Peek has canceled any plans for students to be outside during the solar eclipse next week. The reason behind it—the glasses they purchased for students.
“We’re not sure about the safety of all of the glasses, we don’t want people to have a false sense of security and the glasses not be what they should,” says Peek.
Amazon recently recalled many of the glasses sold on their website because they were not able to confirm whether or not those glasses were made by a recommended manufacturer. That’s important because proper eclipse glasses are able to block out 100,000 times more light than your average sunglasses.
“The glasses are so, so dark. If I put these on right now and looked at our light, I wouldn’t be able to see the light,” says Dr. Stuart Ball.
Dr. Stuart Ball is an ophthalmologist and does not recommend staring at the sun for more than a couple minutes without the glasses.
“Staring directly at the sun is dangerous and if you do it for prolonged time, it’s uncomfortable and it can damage your retina. Whether it’s a chemical reaction or cooking it, it can do permanent damage,” says Ball.
But when it comes to the eclipse Monday, students won’t be left in the dark, so to speak.
“We have the capabilities of filming the solar eclipse as it’s actually happening, we have that advantage with our MCPSS TV, we’re going to have experts on hand, classes will be able to send questions in. We will have the advantage of everyone seeing it, but safely,” says Peek.
Catholic schools in Mobile will let out early–at 11:30 a.m. Monday. Right now, there are no changes in plans for Baldwin or Escambia County, Florida schools.
Amazon is not saying which retailers’ glasses have been recalled, but they have emailed those who purchased affected glasses, offering them a refund.