COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has released guidelines for schools to follow when they reopen in the fall.  

He said these guidelines come after speaking to teachers, superintendents and experts.

Masks were one of the recommendations. All staff members will be required to wear a mask or face shield, unless it is unsafe to do their job.

At the same time, the state is strongly recommending schools require those in the third grade and above to wear a face covering.

The plan also asks for schools to heavily disinfect and sanitize, and to monitor staff and students for symptoms.

In the case that someone at the school would get Coronavirus, the Governor is also asking districts to come up with a testing policy.

There needs to be some school plan in regards to testing, that doesn’t mean schools are going to test everyone. I don’t mean that, but based on good medical evidence when testing should be done. Of course, they must work very very closely with the local health department.

Governor Mike DeWine, (R) Ohio

All of these guidelines will cost money, so Governor DeWine is working with the General Assembly to help schools with money from the Cares Act.

“Working with educators and health officials, we’ve created K-12 school guidelines – backed by science – for schools to follow when developing their reopening plans,” said DeWine. “Schools can adjust their rules to what works best for them for a safe environment and that protects students and staff.” 

DeWine noted that while teachers and students in Ohio did outstanding with distance learning, the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends students be physically present in school as much as possible.  

“Our guidelines are based on the best scientific data we have,” DeWine said, adding that as medical professionals learn more about the virus, the document on the website will be updated.