https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/hea ... 848277001/Mask mandates may have been a flash point in school districts across the nation as students went back to school late this summer, but studies keep showing the policies are helping prevent students from catching COVID-19.
Two Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studies released Friday found outbreaks and pediatric cases were more common when schools didn't mandate masks.
One study of about 1,000 schools in two Arizona counties says schools without mask mandates were 3.5 times more likely to have outbreaks than schools that started the year with a mask mandate. Another study of hundreds of U.S. counties found an increased rate of pediatric cases in areas where schools didn't have mask mandates.
Authors cautioned that a number of variables could affect the analysis, but the findings fall in line with what experts have long said: Masks provide instantaneous — although imperfect — protection from infection.
"School mask requirements, in combination with other prevention strategies, including COVID-19 vaccination, are critical to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in schools," authors wrote in the second study.
Outbreaks have resulted in nearly 2,000 school closures this year, a third study found.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan