For the sake of saving schools and education, CDC has decided to minimise the 6 feet social distancing rule to a 3 feet rule between students. However, this rule will not be applied to older students (i.e. middle and high school students) or teachers as the contagion rate between them is higher than younger students.
The rationale behind this strategy is that the 6-foot rule made it hard for some schools to accommodate students as the capacity was very quickly filled with the following of this rule. CDC Director Dr Rochelle Walensky also provided a clear explanation by declaring, “Safe in-person instruction gives our kids access to critical social and mental health services that prepare them for the future, in addition to the education they need to succeed”.
Masks will be worn at all times with no exception; however, in some places like the cafeteria, music classes, sports classes, the 6 feet rule will be strictly applied.“These updated recommendations provide the evidence-based roadmap to help schools reopen safely and remain open for in-person instruction,” Rochelle Walensky, CDC Director, declared in a statement about the current situation.
Simultaneously, this new strategy is not applicable if the school is in a “red zone” area where COVID-19 rates have reached their highest.
The teachers’ unions had some worries about the new strategy as they were afraid that vaccinations among teaching staff were not a necessary step before schools reopen for face-to-face classes. Despite that, President Joe Biden believes that the “100 Million Shot Goal”– a goal to achieve 100 million Covid-19 vaccinations in the first 100 days of his presidency – will even be accomplished 58 days earlier than expected.
CDC is trying its best to return to normal, especially for schools, as education is a vital element that every country needs to grow. According to experts, remote education reduced socialisation and increased screen time, which is the total opposite of a good standard or even a minimum standard of education. Thereupon, new strategies are necessary despite their potential risks.