CDC considering change for social distancing guidelines in schools

The CDC's possible revision in guidance has been sparked by a recent Harvard study which suggests 3 feet, not 6 feet, is a sufficient distance for school students. Students and staff members in the study wore masks.

News 12 Staff

Mar 16, 2021, 11:29 AM

Updated 1,224 days ago

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For more than a year, we've been told to maintain a 6-foot distance to help stop the spread of COVID-19. But now the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is considering reducing that recommendation for schools.
The CDC's possible revision in guidance has been sparked by a recent Harvard study which suggests 3 feet, not 6 feet, is a sufficient distance for school students. Students and staff members in the study wore masks.
"We are taking all of those data carefully and revisiting our guidances in that context," says CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky.
A change to 3 feet from 6 feet could make a difference in the number of kids allowed in classrooms. Dr. William Johnson says it's already being done in many districts across the Island, especially at the elementary school level. He says with proper space management, it can be done and would enhance the learning experience.
"There's no question in most of our minds right now that the quality of education is enhanced greatly when you in fact invite children into the classroom," says Johnson.
Dr. Frederick Davis, of Northwell Health, says schools should wait until more adults are vaccinated before making the change.
"We're trying to get back to normal or at least some semblance of normal. I think the concern is going too quickly," says Davis. "You don't want to go too quickly because not everyone is fully vaccinated."
The CDC has not given a date for a possible decision, but the World Health Organization has already recommended three feet as a safe distance.


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