Stringent public health measures have been shown to influence the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 within school environments. The authors of this paper investigated the potential transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in a primary school setting with and without public health measures, using fine-grained physical positioning traces captured before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The findings illustrate that, despite a lower frequency of close contacts, teacher-to-teacher close contacts demonstrated a higher risk of transmission per contact of SARS-CoV-2 compared to student-to-student close contacts. This was especially significant with the Omicron variant, with onward transmission more likely occurring from teacher index cases than student index cases. Public health measures (eg, face masks and physical distance) seem essential in reducing the risk of onward transmission within school environments.