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All public K-12 schools in Oregon must offer in-person instruction by mid-April, Gov. Kate Brown (D) said Friday.
Driving the news: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said last month that K-12 schools could safely resume for in-person instruction and remain open if mitigation strategies are strictly adhered to and community transmission of the coronavirus remains low.
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Oregon's average daily number of cases over the last week has been 305, down 19% from the average two weeks earlier, per The New York Times.
Brown's announcement comes nearly a year after she first ordered schools to close for in-person learning due to the pandemic.
Details: In a letter to the state's health authority and education department, Brown directed all Oregon public schools to offer universal access to in-person instruction on or before the week of March 29 for K-5 students and the week of April 19 for students in grades 6-12.
"Individual students or parents who want to remain in comprehensive distance learning, or who have health needs, may do so," Brown's office said in a news release.
"Comprehensive distance learning for all will be an option for school districts when community transmission rates of COVID-19 warrant a transition, as determined by state or local public health directives."
What she's saying: "Thanks to the smart choices Oregonians have made, our COVID-19 numbers have declined," Brown said.
“The science is very, very clear: with proper safety measures in place, there is a low risk of COVID-19 transmission in school," she added.
The big picture: More than 72% of K-12 students across the U.S. were attending schools that offer in-person or hybrid models of learning as of Feb. 28, per Axios' Marisa Fernandez.
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) issued an executive order on Wednesday requiring schools statewide to offer in-person classes by March 15.
Go deeper: More schools are reopening in the U.S.
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