“That’s about 1.3 infections over two weeks in a school of 1,000 kids, or 2.2 infections over two weeks in a group of 1,000 staff,” Oster wrote.
“Even in high-risk areas of the country, the student rates were well under half a percent.”
Oster pointed out that other data show low infection rates as well, with Texas reporting 1,490 student cases out of an estimated 1,080,317 students — a rate of only 0.14 percent. Reported staff cases were at 0.10 percent, she said.
“These numbers are not zero, which for some people means the numbers are not good enough,” she wrote.
“But zero was never a realistic expectation. We know that children can get COVID-19, even if they do tend to have less serious cases. Even if there were no spread in schools, we’d see some cases, because students and teachers can contract the disease off campus. But the numbers are small — smaller than what many had [forecast].”
“One might argue, again, that any risk is too great, and that schools must be completely safe before local governments move to reopen them,” she continued, adding that this “approach ignores the enormous costs to children from closed schools.”