Parents, Schools, and Child Care

For the 2021-2022 school year, Rhode Island schools are responsible for writing their own health and safety plans to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in schools.

Schools should follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) guidance, which include the following laws and regulations:

The State shared Fall 2021 Guidance for Pre K-12 schools to help school districts plan for 100% in-person learning. RIDOH updated its Outbreak Response Protocols Playbook for Pre K-12Here are some tips for preparing kids for a safe return to school.

Find out more about health and safety in schools in our frequently asked questions and other resource materials.

Child Care Programs

Eligible families can get assistance for equitable access to high-quality, safe, affordable child care. Eligible families can choose their own child care provider. RIDOH updated its Outbreak Response Protocols Playbook for child care settings.

Five School and Child Care Safety Tips

  1.  Vaccinate everyone age 12 or older.
  2. Mask your kids to help stop the spread.
    • Governor McKee’s Executive Order and RIDOH’s emergency regulations require public Pre K-12 schools to have a universal indoor masking policy in place for the 2021-2022 school year.
    • RIDOH and the Department of Human Services recommend that everyone age two and older wear a mask indoors and when outdoors in crowded settings.
  3. Wash hands frequently.
    • Hand washing is one of the most simple and best ways to stop the spread of COVID-19, flu, and other infectious diseases.
    • Protect your household from COVID-19.
  4.  Keep kids home if they have COVID-19 symptoms. 
  5. Get tested as recommended.

COVID-19 and Children

  • Most children with COVID-19 have mild symptoms or they may have no symptoms at all (“asymptomatic”). Fewer children have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults.
  • Babies younger than one and children with certain underlying medical conditions may be more likely to have serious illness from COVID-19.
  • Some children who have had COVID-19 have developed a rare but serious disease called multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C). Some doctors think the condition is related to having COVID-19, but the connection is still not clear. Learn more with the MIS-C Fact Sheet.
  • Tips on coping with stress from COVID-19.