Masking Recommendations for Child Care: COVID-19
Child care settings will continue to have both vaccinated and unvaccinated people as there is not a vaccine approved for children under 12 years of age available yet. For this reason, it is strongly recommended that child care settings continue prevention measures, including use of face coverings and physical distancing, even after staff have been vaccinated, especially in areas of moderate to high community transmission levels.
MDH recommends that child care operators follow CDC: COVID-19 Guidance for Operating Early Care and Education/Child Care Programs, which states:
- Masks should be worn indoors by all people (ages 2 and older) who are not fully vaccinated (meaning it has been at least two weeks since their final dose of vaccine). Child care settings may implement universal mask use in some situations, such as if they serve a population not yet eligible for vaccination or if they have increasing, substantial, or high COVID-19 transmission in their program or community.
- In general, people do not need to wear masks when outdoors. However, particularly in areas of substantial to high transmission, CDC recommends that people age 2 and older who are not fully vaccinated wear a mask in crowded outdoor settings or during activities that involve sustained close contact with other people who are not fully vaccinated.
- To facilitate learning and social and emotional development, consider having staff who are not fully vaccinated wear a clear or cloth mask with a clear panel when interacting with young children, children learning to read, or when interacting with people who rely on reading lips.
- For information about how to select, wear, and clean your face covering, visit CDC: Your Guide to Masks and Recommendations for Wearing Masks.
- After touching or removing your face covering, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- MDH recognizes there are specific instances when wearing a face covering is not feasible. In these instances, accommodations should be considered.