In Frankfurt, Germany schools have remained open in November though the coronavirus surge has shut down restaurants, gyms, bars, theaters and tattoo parlors. Students are attending school full time, not through online classes but in person.
Everybody is doing their part. Parents wear masks when dropping children to school and teachers wear masks throughout the day. European countries including Germany, France and Italy and the UK have found that schools, especially with young children, have not been major transmission centers of the virus.
Experts say that these countries are committed to avoiding the worse impacts of the pandemic on the future of their children.
The US has taken another approach. Most states have encouraged remote learning. Virtual classrooms are the norm and very few schools have full classrooms. Some states are allowing 50% capacity for indoor dining and bars, while shutting schools. Texas and Florida are the only two states where schools and most businesses have stayed open.
Andreas Schleicher from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development says, “Research has shown that if you put social distancing protocols in place, school is actually quite a safe environment, certainly safer than having children running around outside school.”