4 News Now Q&A: What does new COVID-19 transmission research mean for you?

Q: What does new COVID-19 transmission research mean for you? 

A: A new study reaffirms that although COVID-19 impacts older people more severely, younger adults are the cause of the spread.

The report was published in Science magazine this week. It found that people between 20 and 49 years old were responsible for more than 70 percent of the spread of COVID last year. The researchers said certain age groups, like young adults, are letting down their guard, and some are easing up on safety protocols.

Researchers also found that after many schools reopened in the fall, children and teens contributed to only 15 percent of the COVID cases.

This particular study is just one we’ve seen recently that shows allowing younger students back to classrooms with good protocols in place won’t be the main driver of transmission in the community. The CDC also believes this to be the case, and now says schools don’t have to wait for teachers to be vaccinated to reopen.

Many of you want to know if this new guidance will fast track local school districts’ reopening plans.

4 News Now reached out to Spokane Public Schools for an answer, but we haven’t heard back yet. Right now, the tentative plan is to bring back fifth and sixth graders on an alternating schedule on February 17. On March 1, middle and high school students would come back. This still needs to be approved by the school board.

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