State outlines preliminary guidance on reopening schools

KYW Staff
June 03, 2020 - 12:41 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Pennsylvania Department of Education officials say in-person instruction at elementary and secondary schools can resume on July 1.

The guidelines apply to school districts in the “yellow” and “green” phases of Pennsylvania's phased-in reopening plan amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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The governor said last week that Philadelphia and neighboring counties are expected to move from “red” to “yellow” on Friday, at which point all Pennsylvania counties will be out of the “red” phase.

Before schools can reopen, they must develop coronavirus health and safety plans based on CDC and Pennsylvania Health Department guidelines.

District safety plans must include naming a pandemic coordinator, taking steps to make sure high-risk children are protected, and establishing processes to monitor symptoms in students and staff. 

The plans also must include protocols for using face masks and social distancing, and rules for cleaning and disinfecting schools. Large school gatherings would be restricted.

Postsecondary institutions and adult basic education programs in the “yellow” and “green” phases can also resume on June 5, with the development of a health and safety plan. 

The Pennsylvania Department of Education is expected to offer more detailed guidance for school openings later this month.