With nationwide school closures currently operating in 191 countries, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has estimated that 1.6 billion (90.2%) students are currently out of primary, secondary and tertiary education (henceforth schools) as a result of the global COVID-19 lockdown. These restrictions have been introduced to help maintain physical distancing and have contributed to the stabilising incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infections and resulting COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths now being witnessed in many parts of the world. These measures have the potential however – particularly if prolonged – to result in major detrimental effects on the health and well-being of children and adolescents. In the absence of a robust evidence base on lockdown exit strategies, we consider the range of options being taken globally to reopen schools with a view to informing the formulation of national plans.

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Sheikh, A., Sheikh, A., Sheikh, Z. & Dhami, S. 2020, 'Reopening schools after the COVID-19 lockdown', Journal of Global Health, 10(1), article no: 010376. https://doi.org/10.7189/jogh.10.010376

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Last updated: 17 June 2022
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