CDC Says Schools Can Now Space Students 3 Feet Apart, Rather Than 6< < Back to
WASHINGTON, D.C. (NPR) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated its guidance for schools. On Friday, the agency announced it “now recommends that, with universal masking, students should maintain a distance of at least 3 feet in classroom settings.”
Previously the guidance stated, “Physical distancing (at least 6 feet) should be maximized to the greatest extent possible.” The new guidelines still call for 6 feet of distance between adults and students, as well as in common areas, such as auditoriums, and when masks are off, such as while eating. And the 6-foot distancing rule still applies for the general public in settings such as grocery stores.
The change is momentous because in many places around the country, the 6-foot guidance has been interpreted as requiring schools to operate on part-time or hybrid schedules in order to reduce class sizes. A 3-foot rule would allow many more schools to open in person, full time.