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Reynolds signs new public health proclamation advancing Iowa’s Return to Learn strategy

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DES MOINES – Gov. Reynolds signed a new proclamation Friday continuing the Public Health Disaster Emergency and taking a number of actions to advance Iowa’s Return to Learn strategy.

The proclamation directs all state agencies, school districts and local governments to focus on preparing to safely welcome back students and teachers to school in-person in the fall. It also provides clarity for when a school may move to primarily remote learning, authorizing it when:

• Parents select remote learning as the best option for their family;

• The Iowa Department of Education in consultation with the Iowa Department of Public Health approves a temporary move to online learning for an entire building or district in response to public health conditions;

•A school, in consultation with state and local public health officials, determines that individual students or classrooms must be temporarily moved to online learning; or

•A school chooses to temporarily move to online learning because of severe weather instead of taking a snow day.

Finally, it provides regulatory relief to address our education workforce, including removing limitations on how often and long substitutes teachers can teach and expanding the pool of Iowans who are eligible to serve as substitute teachers.

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