DeWine warns school districts not to delay reopening plans


Concerning consequences for school districts that don't comply, DeWine said he will stop all vaccinations currently taking place

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) – Ohio Governor Mike DeWine held a last-minute evening news conference on Friday. He felt it important enough since some school districts are breaking their commitments to a March 1 start date for in-person learning.

The governor named names.

“This is the document that they signed,” he said.

He made it clear what school administrators had signed. It stated, “For your… staff to be… vaccinated, you are required to return to in-person or hybrid learning by March 1.”

He said every school district in Ohio signed it except for one in the Dayton area.

“The reason I’m here tonight, though, is we have learned that there are a handful of schools that have indicated that they will break that promise,” he said. “This is simply not acceptable.”

One week ago, staff members of the Youngstown City Schools were being vaccinated, and the majority have been completed.

Youngstown is one of the few districts still totally remote, but did sign the pledge to have some type of in-person classes by March 1.

We were told that Youngstown is working on a plan.

The governor specifically mentioned the Cincinnati Schools, where the vaccinations are complete, but where Walnut Hills High School will remain remote.

The Akron Schools, which have also finished vaccinations, but where in-person classes won’t start until March 15.

Then Cleveland, which is in the process of vaccinating, but was considering staying remote until the governor mentioned stopping the vaccines. Cleveland is now working toward March 1.

“Your commitment is not just to me, your commitment is to your children in your school district and your commitment is to those parents, those parents who have said yes, I want to send my child back. I think that’s in the best interest,” DeWine said.

Concerning consequences for school districts that don’t comply, DeWine said he will stop all vaccinations currently taking place.

For those school systems already vaccinated, he said he’ll see what else they can do.

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