The Montgomery County Public Schools Board of Education recently voted to allow students to return to the classroom in phases beginning March 1. Meanwhile, local health officials continue to offer guidance to help mitigate transmission of the COVID-19 virus as the transition back to in-person learning gears up.
According to the MCPS Spring 2021: Recovery of Education Guide, the school system will follow applicable guidelines from the Maryland Department of Health, the local health department, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the safe reopening of in-person instruction.
“COVID-19 cases and test positivity are trending downward in Montgomery County; access to the vaccine is increasing; and research now suggests, with proper mitigation strategies, school can reopen safely,” the guide also reads.
During the county’s weekly virtual media briefing on Wednesday, Montgomery County Health Officer Dr. Travis Gayles said, “the guidance that we have provided continues to be the same and is consistent with the measures and metrics we put out in the fall.”
Although the Montgomery County Health Department does not determine if schools reopen or not, Dr. Gayles says local health officials will continue to meet regularly with MCPS officials and monitor safety guidance based on data.
MyMCM tuned into the briefing.
Education officials say if the present downward trend in COVID-19 cases changes, MCPS may need to “revisit their reopening plan to keep the well-being of students and staff at the forefront of planning.” Education officials say families will receive information on classroom-specific plans throughout February.