An evidence-based theory of change for reducing SARS-CoV-2 transmission in reopened schools Academic Article uri icon


  • Schools have closed worldwide as part of measures to prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission but are beginning to reopen in some countries. Various measures are being pursued to minimise transmission but existing guidance has not developed a comprehensive framework or theory of change. We present a framework informed by the occupational health hierarchy of control and a theory of change informed by realist approaches. We present measures focused on elimination, substitution, engineering, administration, education and personal protective equipment. We theorise that such measures offer a means of disrupting SARS-CoV-2 transmission via routes involving fomites, faeco-oral routes, droplets and aerosols.


  • Bonell, Chris
  • Melendez-Torres, GJ
  • Viner, Russell M
  • Rogers, M Brooke
  • Whitworth, Michael
  • Rutter, Harry
  • Rubin, G James
  • Patton, George

publication date

  • July 2020