DeWine, Doctors Promote Mitigation Efforts For Safe Return To School

Aug 11, 2020

A group of pediatricians joined Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) in raising awareness of how communities can help students return to school. Amid concerns over the risk of coronavirus spreading at schools, the doctors say there are ways students can stay safe.

The doctors from three different Ohio children's hospitals said the health risk will still exist, but students can mitigate that risk by staying six feet apart, wearing masks, and washing their hands.  

DeWine says adults who want students to return to school, sports and other extracurricular activities can also play a role.  

"If you want them to have that experience then it's incumbent upon all of us, every single one of us to do everything we can to keep down the spread in the community in which that school lives," says DeWine. 

Patty Manning-Courtney, chief of staff at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, says parents and family can prepare students for the changes they can expect at school.

"Schedules and predictability help everybody. So there are a lot of basic things that families and teachers can do, starting with just talking to children and trusting that they're going to be able to understand and to comply," says Manning-Courtney.

Teachers and community leaders have expressed concern over returning to in person classes when there hasn't been a steady decline in the number of coronavirus cases. 

As DeWine held his briefing, the Big Ten Conference announced it was canceling its fall season.

"As a football fan, and we have a lot of them in Ohio, a lot of Buckeye fans that certainly is not good news. Ultimately, this is a decision that has to be made by the schools. They way many things, and I'm sure they start off with the safety of their players," says DeWine.

The governor is expected to make an announcement this week regarding high school contact sports, which includes football, soccer, and field hockey.