During a press conference Thursday afternoon, Governor Mike DeWine announced the plan for K-12 schools across Ohio to reopen this fall.
Guidelines for the reopening of K-12 schools in Ohio include:
“Vigilantly assessing symptoms”: Students, caregivers and staff are asked to monitor their health before departing for school. Those with temperatures over 100 degrees are asked to stay home. Students and staff who develop symptoms at school will be sent home. Schools will need to work with their local health departments to trace cases and conduct testing.
“Hand washing”: Schools must provide time for students and staff to regularly wash hands. Hand washing and sanitation stations are to be set up around each school.
“Sanitation and deep cleaning schools”: Schools will be required to regularly disinfect the school and high touch areas to mitigate the spread of the virus.
“Practicing social distancing”: Schools should strive to maintain 6-feet of distance between students and staff in classrooms, lunchrooms, school busses, and other school settings when possible to limit exposure to COVID-19.
“Face coverings”: Every school must develop a face-covering policy. Staff, like other business sectors that have reopened in the state, will be required to wear a mask or face covering. When face coverings are not practical, staff may opt to use face shields. The state also strongly recommends, but is not mandating, that children in third grade or higher should wear a mask. Additionally, schools may also decide to include younger grades in their face mask policy.
Each school must follow the state’s guidelines while creating their own reopening plans. For further information, you can read the Ohio Department of Education’s reopening documents, one on health and the other on education.