CDC and AAP provide guides and tips about reopening schools
Published 2:58 pm Friday, August 21, 2020
BY BRITTNEE NAVE
Maintaining the safety of children is a top priority when making decisions regarding in-person or online learning.
Organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and the American Association of Pediatrics have provided detailed information in regards to children and COVD-19.
The CDC outlined the virus and children, as well as guidelines for opening schools.
According to their website, school administrators should make decisions on reopening in collaboration with local and state health officials.
“Implementation should be guided by what is feasible, practical, acceptable, and tailored to the needs of each community,” the CDC states.
In addition to guidelines for open safely, it is urged that adaptability and strategies also be in place, for example, should a student of staff member become sick.
In exploring the risk COVID-19 poses to children, the CDC indicated that based on studies, areas of low transmission posed a low risk to children.
That being said, the risks of spreading must be weighed with the benefits of in-person learning. In-person learning is described as being beneficial to the development and mental well-being.
As a result, weighing this along with the risk of spreading the virus must go hand-in-hand.
“The unique and critical role that schools play makes them a priority for reopening and remaining open, enabling students to receive both academic instruction and enable the provision of other critical services and supports,” the CDC states.
“By strictly implementing mitigation strategies, schools will be able to meet the needs of their students and community, while reducing the risk of COVID-19 spread.”
Among guidelines are cleaning practices, social distancing, isolating those who are ill, and even ventilation systems.
This guide can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/schools.html.
Like the CDC, the AAP has introduced planning considerations when reopening schools.
The website details the important role school plays for children.
“Beyond supporting the educational development of children and adolescents, schools play a critical role in addressing racial and social inequity,” the AAP states.
“As such, it is critical to reflect on the differential impact the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated school closures have had on different racial and ethnic groups and vulnerable populations.”
The AAP website outlines tips and considerations for reopening, to name a few includes: flexibility to new information, multilayered approaches, strategies and close contact to state and local health officials.
The full guide can be found at https://services.aap.org/en/pages/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-infections/clinical-guidance/covid-19-planning-considerations-return-to-in-person-education-in-schools.
While the decision regarding in-person learning remains a difficult one, finding reputable sources, like the CDC and AAP, when conducting research is essential.