Pediatr Infect Vaccine.  2021 Aug;28(2):57-65. 10.14776/piv.2021.28.e14.

School Closures during Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outbreak

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Chungnam National University Hospital, Daejeon, the Republic of Korea
  • 2Department of Pediatrics, Korea University Anam Hospital, Seoul, the Republic of Korea


School closures during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic have been outlined in studies from different disciplines, including economics, sociology, mathematical modeling, epidemiology, and public health. In this review, we discuss the implications of school closures in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Modeling studies of the effects of school closures, largely derived from the pandemic influenza model, on severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 produced conflicting results. Earlier studies assessed the risk of school reopening by modeling transmission across schools and communities; however, it remains unclear whether the risk is due to increased transmission in adults or children. The empirical findings of the impact of school closures on COVID-19 outbreaks suggest no clear effect, likely because of heterogeneity in community infection pressure, differences in school closure strategies, or the use of multiple interventions. The benefits of school closings are unclear and not readily quantifiable; however, they must be weighed against the potential high social costs, which can also negatively affect the health of this generation.


COVID-19; Coronavirus; School; Child
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