American Academy of Pediatrics says youngsters returning to highschool this fall ought to put on masks no matter vaccination standing

In just a few weeks, kids across the country are preparing to go back to school – but a new statement from pediatricians may not translate into a mask-free school year. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, all children returning to classrooms this fall should wear their masks, whether or not they are fully vaccinated.

@NBCNews reports that while many parents were hoping their children’s upcoming school year would go back to normal without the use of masks, it doesn’t seem like the smartest decision as stated by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The AAP recently strongly recommended that all children over the age of 2, regardless of their current vaccination status, wear their masks when they return to school in the fall. This recommendation on wearing masks also includes school staff, as the AAP says it is crucial for in-person learning to return fully and that the suggested precautions for wearing masks are a “layered approach” to safety.

Sonia O’Leary, Chair of the AAP Council on School Health, explained the AAP’s stance on children who wear masks. “Our priority must be getting children back into schools with their friends and teachers – and we are all helping to ensure that it happens safely. The combination of protective layers that include vaccinations, masking and clean hand hygiene will make personal learning safe and possible for everyone, ”she said.

In addition, the AAP further stated that since the vast majority of the U.S. student population is not currently vaccinated, the wearing of universal masks is required in schools because it is difficult for schools to determine who is vaccinated and who is not – and the new COVID-19 variants that are currently emerging could ease the spread among children.

Earlier this month, the Food and Drug Administration announced that emergency vaccine approval for children under the age of 12 could be available early next year.

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