Iowa Schools Set To Reopen With No Restrictions

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction released their 89-page handbook, designed to give state school districts guidelines on how to reopen for school this fall. While there’s no clear-cut message, and school districts are left to work with local health officials to map out the plan, Iowa education officials have now released guidelines that will allow schools to reopen to normal activities as of July 1 without requirements that students and teachers undergo health checks, wear face coverings or observe social distancing in schools.

Officials with the Iowa State Education Association are concerned that too much is happening too soon. Jean Hessburg, a spokeswoman for the Iowa State Education Association, the state’s teacher’s union, said the plan doesn’t comply with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for public places.

“It is a gamble and obscene that the governor and the Department of Education are gambling on the health and and safety of our students, our staff and school employees,” Hessburg said. “This virus has demonstrated that it knows no bounds and students can bring the virus home to families and ravage a family.”

ISEA President Mike Beranek released a statement urging school districts to create their own guidelines mandating face coverings, physical distancing and other safety protocols. The union represents more than 50,000 teachers and other education professionals. The Iowa Department of Education made no public announcement on the guidelines, and Gov. Kim Reynolds did not make any mention of it at recent press conferences.