DeWine says Ohio will fall short of returning every school back to in-person learning by March 1

School generic
School vaccination progress chart
Posted at 2:59 PM, Feb 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-25 14:59:50-05

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Except for one district, all COVID-19 vaccine doses requested by schools through the state’s vaccination program will be allocated by the end of the month, but 10 districts will remain in fully remote learning on March 1, and the state will not meet its goal of in-person or hybrid learning at 100% of schools, Gov. Mike DeWine said Thursday.

“Our goal of getting everybody back in March 1 is not going to be fully completed,” DeWine said. “But we made a tremendous amount of progress.”

The 10 districts that will remain in remote learning after March 1 represent 6.8% of Ohio’s students. That list includes the Cleveland school district.

School vaccination progress chart
Chart showing the progress of Ohio schools in getting vaccinated, as of Feb. 25.

By Sunday night, the four-week school vaccination program will be complete, with just one school left to receive first doses of vaccine, which will happen in the first few days of next week, DeWine said. Many teachers and school personnel have already received their second dose, and the rest will receive them in the coming weeks.

“It’s very important for these students to be back in school,” DeWine said. “I thank everyone who’s been a part of this, and it’s working exceedingly well, we will continue to work with a handful of schools that will not be able to meet the March 1 deadline. We would encourage them to get back in school, just as quick as they can.”

Cleveland Metropolitan School District announced Thursday that the district would not meet the March 1 deadline and would begin returning to in-person learning on March 8. DeWine called out CMSD and a handful of other school districts in a surprise Friday night press briefing on Feb. 12.

RELATED: Cleveland Metropolitan School District announces delay in return to in-person learning

“I know some of them have made efforts to speed that up. We certainly appreciate those efforts as well, but we’re very happy that this is going to happen and we’re happy right now it’s already happened for the great majority of our students in the state of Ohio,” DeWine said.

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