July 28, 2020
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Schools and Childcare Programs
As families and policymakers make decisions about children returning to school, it is important to consider the full spectrum of benefits and risks of both in-person and virtual learning options. Parents are understandably concerned about the safety of their children at school during COVID-19.
Visit CDC’s COVID-19 page on Schools and Childcare Programs to plan for the coming school year. This site includes information for school and program administrators as well as parents and caregivers.
For School and Program Administrators
As some communities in the United States open K-12 schools, CDC offers the following considerations for ways in which schools can help protect students, teachers, administrators, and staff and slow the spread of COVID-19. This guidance is for K-12 school administrators who are preparing for students, teachers, and staff to return to school in fall 2020. School administrators are individuals who oversee the daily operations of K-12 schools and may include school district superintendents, school principals, and assistant principals.
It is critical that all administrators:
For Parents and Caregivers
Going back to school this fall will require schools and families to work together even more than before. Schools will be making changes to their policies and operations with several goals: supporting learning; providing important services, such as school meals, extended daycare, extracurricular activities, and social services; and limiting the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Teachers and staff can teach and encourage preventive behaviors at school. Likewise, it will be important for families to emphasize and model healthy behaviors at home and to talk to your children about changes to expect this school year. Even if your child will attend school in-person, it is important to prepare for the possibility of virtual learning if school closes or if your child becomes exposed to COVID-19 and needs to stay home.
CDC has created a checklist to help with back to school planning for school year (SY) 2020-2021. If your school uses a hybrid model, you may want to review both the in-person and virtual/at-home learning checklists.
Actions to take and points to consider
Many schools are offering parents and guardians a choice between in-person and virtual modes of instruction. CDC’s Decision-Making Tool for Parents and Guardians is designed to help you think through school re-entry and the choices that your child’s school is offering.