Younger Children Should Attend School When Possible: Expert Committee
Report offers advice for school districts on whether and how to reopen
THURSDAY, July 16, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Younger children and those with special needs should attend school in person whenever possible, because online learning is mostly ineffective for these children, according to a committee that advises the United States on science-related issues.
The report from the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine offers advice for school districts on whether and how to reopen as the coronavirus pandemic rages nationwide.
Committee member Caitlin Rivers, an epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins, said "it should be a priority for districts to reopen for in-person learning, especially for younger ages," The New York Times reported.
School reopening precautions recommended by the committee include: hand washing; physical distancing; minimizing group activities, including lunch and recess; having all teachers and staff wear surgical masks during school hours; having all students wear cloth face coverings; and regular symptom and temperature checks.
The committee also said that schools will have to upgrade ventilation and air-filtration systems in the coming years and that those improvements should be funded by federal and state governments, The Times reported.