Special Report

How Schools Plan to Reopen in Every State

Schools across the country have begun to reopen. Some students are already going for in-person classes, while others will be starting the new academic year online. While each school or school district has the final say about the method of reopening, state health departments have released different sets of guidelines — sometimes accused of being somewhat vague and confusing — for safely reopening schools.

The guidelines each state department has released are only a guidance and not a mandate. They offer advice on what schools should require from students, parents, and staff in order to prevent the transmission of the coronavirus.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed executive orders, directives, and guidelines issued by either governors or education and health departments to create a list of restrictions and safety recommendations for resuming in-person instruction in every state.

Though the recommendations vary largely from state to state, classes across the country will all look very different than they did in March, when schools were suddenly ordered to close because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Most states require that school districts at the very least plan for the possibility of remote learning, as the shutting down of schools may be necessary again depending on community spread. Districts are taking different precautions to prevent outbreaks. Officials in Los Angeles, San Diego, and Chicago, which are some of the largest school districts in the country, have already decided the fall semester of the new academic year will be held full-time online.

Many of the requirements and suggestions are dependent on whether states have been able to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Most states’ guidelines were released at the beginning or in the middle of June, before a resurgence of COVID-19 infections was reported across the country — here are the cities where the virus is growing the fastest right now.

Click here for every state’s plan to reopen schools.