Study finds ways to mitigate COVID spread on school buses

Many schools to offer transportation as students return to classrooms this fall

A recent study found that school busses can be safe for children to ride amid the pandemic, as long as certain protocols are in place to help prevent virus spread.

With students returning to in-person learning this fall, yet another concern takes center stage: Are children likely to be exposed to COVID-19 while riding the school bus?

Between children doing virtual school amid the pandemic, and so many parents working from home and able to drive their children to school, many buses were running with light loads over the past year. But that won’t be the case this fall.

As school districts are making decisions about transporting children by bus, a new study out of Virginia can help provide a road map to doing it safely.

Researchers at Eastern Virginia Medical School and the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters came together to study school bus operations at an independent school to determine how easily COVID-19 could spread on the buses when they were running at near capacity.

The researchers found that with certain protocols in place -- like mandatory mask wearing, window ventilation and assigned seats -- COVID spread could be mitigated among students and staff.

Watch the full report in the video player above.

Related: Back to school: Teachers share expectations for COVID school year ahead

About the Author:

Dr. McGeorge can be seen on Local 4 News helping Metro Detroiters with health concerns when he isn't helping save lives in the emergency room at Henry Ford Hospital.