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It might be up to local jurisdictions on when or not they decide to reopen schools, but Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has made it clear that all students and staff must wear masks.

The decision comes after the number of cases has increased by more than 700 per day for the past several days. On Wednesday, the state’s total cases surpassed 80,000. Hospitalizations were also up.

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“I know people are anxious to get these final decisions, but it’s absolutely critical that rather than rushing, we get this right,” Hogan said. “For our communities, for our teachers and especially for each and every one of our children in Maryland.”

Local school systems have until August 14 to submit recovery plans. They must address the following:

  • Systems must follow CDC guidelines including wearing masks and hand-washing.
  • They must adhere to state protocols for addressing an outbreak
  • They must identify learning gaps, keep up with curricular frameworks and ensure safe transportation to and from school.

Nine schools systems, including Baltimore City and County, have made the decision to start the school year virtually. Maryland Superintendent of Schools Karen Salmon said her office is working to bridge the digital divide by dedicating $100 million to giving students the devices and internet connectivity they need.

Another $100 million will be invested in tutoring and learning programs to address learning loss due to the time away from direct instruction and teacher intervention.

The state is also committing $255 million from the CARES fund to be used for education priorities.

Read More: CBS Baltimore

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Masks Required For Students & Staff When Maryland Schools Reopen  was originally published on wolbbaltimore.com

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