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Infectious Diseases Experts Call for Layered Strategy to Protect Students and School Employees

“The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) is urging school systems nationwide to use all available public health tools and strategies to prevent COVID-19 transmission in schools as teachers and students return to in-person learning. This is critical with children under the age of 12 still ineligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, the highly contagious delta variant circulating throughout the U.S. and vaccination rates lagging in some areas of the country.

Protecting students requires that they and the adults around them follow science-based public health guidance, which includes:

  • vaccination for all eligible individuals;
  • universal mask wearing in schools and on school buses;
  • maintaining physical distance;
  • conducting activities, especially lunch, outdoors when possible;
  • ventilation, including opening windows in classrooms and on school buses when weather permits;
  • staying home when sick;
  • transparent procedures for reporting, contact tracing and quarantining in the event of an exposure.

Reports of outbreaks in schools and among children have risen since the school year began. IDSA experts say putting multiple COVID-19 prevention strategies in place is the best way to keep students, teachers and school employees safe.”

Barbara D. Alexander, MD, MHS, FIDSA—President, Infectious Diseases Society of America

About IDSA
The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) is a community of over 12,000 physicians, scientists, and public health experts who specialize in infectious diseases. Its purpose is to improve the health of individuals, communities, and society by promoting excellence in patient care, education, research, public health, and prevention relating to infectious diseases. Learn more at

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