As per an analysis of the federal data, almost 99% of the US children live in a county that is reported to be a high-risk zone with a high level of COVID 19 transmission. The new guidelines from CDC (Centers for Disease Control and prevention) too attest to this observation.
CDC recommends online learning for middle and high school children. It suggests a hybrid study method for elementary schools. The agency even recommends minimum attendance in high-risk areas. According to CDC, a high-risk area is a place where there are 100 new instances of COVID 19 for every 100000 people. The place with 10% test positivity for the past one week rate too falls in this category. Nearly 99% of the country’s children stay in these areas, suggest reports. It suggests a five-point mitigation strategy: using masks, social distance, washing hands, clean and properly ventilated buildings and contact tracing. The guidelines also suggest different strategies based on the extent of virus transmission.
Almost All US Kids Live In Red Zones; Reveals New CDC Guidelines
Communities should use red color to indicate a high transmission rate. Orange color should mean substantial transition. Blue should imply moderate transmission, and yellow should indicate low transmission. The schools should conduct a weekly reassessment. If a school in a high-transmission community cannot strictly implement the mitigation guidelines, it should make all extra-curricular activities virtual. Schools in high-risk areas have to implement virtual learning. Elementary schools can go for hybrid learning. However, they should maintain maximum physical distance with minimum attendance.
There are only less than 100000 children in low-transmission areas where CDC allows in-person teaching for K12 students. Most of them live either in Washington or Hawaii.
If you are a parent concerned about this development, these 11 tips will definitely help:
- Live like you did earlier.
Most of the time, COVID 19 infections are minor. This implies that families should continue their normal life as best as possible. If not instructed otherwise, you should go out and spend time with friends.
- Practice and teach hand hygiene
Even today, scientists know partly about how COVID 19 spreads. Still, there exists no dispute among experts in one thing. Proper hand hygiene checks its transmission to a great extent. Teach your children not to touch their eyes, mouth or nose without cleaning hands and covering their mouth when sneezing. Don’t forget to teach them how to wash their hands properly.
- Don’t focus too much on hand sanitizer.
Hand sanitizer is not as effective as water and soap in cleaning hands. The products like Purell work only when your hand is dry. Children may not wait patiently for it. Teach your children to wait until they reach home to have a snack.
- Remind them to avoid shaking hands with anyone
Business institutions and churches have banned shaking hands. This, they do, to prevent the spread of COVID 19. Children do not need a reminder to refrain from such forms of greeting. But shaking hands can even happen in schools among friends. Teach them to avoid it.
- Bags and shoes should be at the door.
All through the year, especially during this pandemic, experts advise parents to teach children to leave their shoes and bags at the front door. This prevents bacteria from getting inside.
Finally, ask them to change clothes when coming from school. They should learn to take high-risk loved ones into account when moving around. Minimizing contacts and refraining from hugging anyone, too, would do a lot in this regard.
Avoiding crowded places and cleaning homes at regular intervals, too, will work miracles in checking COVID 19 transmission. Try to use masks only when sick.