Protecting While Connecting for Teaching and Learning

White Paper: The Best Selection of PPE in Reopening Classrooms


This white paper is based on the analysis and review of more than forty peer-reviewed quantitative and qualitative studies on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), the social-emotional needs of students, and suggested practices for preventing the spread of COVID 19. With school districts forming task forces and developing plans for school reopenings, we prepared this document to facilitate the discussion of best safe practices while meeting student needs. As education experts, we synthesized recommendations for practical use of available PPE options in classrooms as a decision making guide in how to return to classrooms safely. This paper is a synopsis of emerging academic research and literature related to the successes and challenges of reducing the spread of COVID 19 with consideration of the social-emotional well being of PreK-12 stakeholders. Our team utilized clinical research data and classroom expertise to make the recommendation for use of face shields alone, or in combination with face masks for the specialized needs of the school community.


● Teachers struggle to keep a culture of known best classroom practices while
living with the threat of COVID 19

● “Students in special education, English learners, and those with identified gaps
need to be at school receiving services, resources, and facetime to support all
needs.” (Principal Lorena Rubio, Orange Unified)

● Homemade masks are not considered PPE since their capability to protect the
wearer is unknown, yet they are the only CDC preventative equipment measure

● Current data suggests the primary source of transmission of COVID 19 is in
respiratory drops from coughing, sneezing and talking spread to eyes, nose, and

● Health experts do not expect a vaccine or known standard of treatment or
prevention by return to school in fall 2020.

Read our whitepaper as PDF here: