Everyone over the age of 2 must wear masks, regardless of vaccination status, when schools reopen in the fall, according to updated guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics released Monday.
The leading national pediatric group said it is recommending universal masking because much of the student population is not yet eligible for vaccination. It’s not clear how quickly that will change, or how likely parents are to get their younger children dosed when the federal government approves shots for children under 12.
Research consistently shows that opening schools in person generally does not increase community transmission of COVID when masks and other protocols are used, AAP says, and fuels the emergence of more contagious variants, some of which are linked to more severe outcomes. a particular threat to unvaccinated people.