PHMDC issues emergency order requiring students in grades 3-12 to start school year virtually

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MADISON, Wis. — Public Health Madison and Dane County has issued an emergency order that will require county schools to start the school year with all-virtual learning for grades 3-12.

Public health officials said the decision has been made due to the current average COVID-19 case count in Dane County.

“Moving students in grades 3-12 to virtual learning is not a step we take lightly, as schools provide critical services, and in-person instruction offers unparalleled opportunities and structure for students and parents,” said Janel Heinrich, Director of Public Health Madison & Dane County. “Given our current case count, we believe moving students in grades 3-12 to virtual learning is necessary for the safety of our community.”

According to the news release, grades K-2 are allowed to have in-person classes with precautions outlined in the order. Schools with K-2 students do not need to open for in-person instruction, but those that do must also allow virtual learning as an option.

Officials said the order will go into effect Monday at 12:01 a.m.