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Waco-McLennan County Public Health District orders schools to delay in-person classes, school activities

CORONAVIRUS IN MCLENNAN COUNTY
Posted at 2:40 PM, Jul 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-25 16:34:13-04

UPDATE: Dr. Farley Verner, the Local Health Authority for the Waco McLennan County Public Health District has issued a revision to the control measures put in place on July 21, 2020.

"There is a need to clarify the July 21, 2020 Order to remain consistent with the Executive Order of Governor Greg Abbott. With the revision, religious schools are exempt from the Order and may start in-person classes before September 7, 2020. Public schools and non-religious private schools must comply with the order."

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The Waco-McLennan County Public Health District has issued an order delaying in-person classes and in-person activities for all schools until after September 7.

Dr. Farley Verner, the Medical Authority for the health district, issued the control measures on all public and private schools who offer instruction to students in any and all grades, pre-kindergarten through grade 12 in McLennan County.

Administrators, teachers and staff may conduct or facilitate online learning while on-campus as long as social distancing is followed and facial coverings are worn at all times except when recording or broadcasting instruction to a virtual, remote or other off-site audience.

All school-sponsored events and activities, including but not limited to clubs, sports, fairs, exhibitions, academic and/or athletic competitions, are also not permitted to take place until school systems are authorized to resume on-campus instruction.

School systems must develop a written plan for resuming on-campus instruction and extra-curricular activities and submit said plan to the local health authority no later than Friday, August 21. The plan must be made available for parents and the general public.

The order takes effect July 21.

“I believe these control measures are necessary to protect the public health based on the higher risk for spread of COVID-19 in schools due to the necessity of large groups gathering and the difficulty for some children to follow social distancing and hygiene guidelines," said Dr. Verner. "In conjunction with other measures already in place, the control measures contained in this order will further restrict and prevent the spread of COVID-19 throughout the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District.”

Full order: