by Ethan Yang
The American Institute for Economic Research
On March 19th the Centers for Disease Control issued a press release detailing changes to its operational strategy for K-12 students. It stated that among other things, students may now reduce their social distancing from 6 feet to 3 feet. The release begins as follows,
“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is updating K–12 school guidance to reflect the latest science on physical distance between students in classrooms. CDC now recommends that, with universal masking, students should maintain a distance of at least 3 feet in classroom settings. CDC has updated its operational strategy to say:
– In elementary schools, CDC recommends all students remain at least 3 feet apart in classrooms where mask use is universal — regardless of whether community transmission is low, moderate, substantial, or high.
– In middle and high schools, CDC also recommends students should be at least 3 feet apart in classrooms where mask use is universal and in communities where transmission is low, moderate, or substantial.
Although this updated guideline is still ridiculous, it’s at least more in line with the established science on the transmission of airborne diseases, not whatever we have been working with for the current pandemic.