Governor Beshear recommends schools delay in-person classes until late-September


FRANKFORT, Ky. (WEHT) – Governor Beshear announced on Monday a “tough but necessary recommendation” for all Kentucky schools to wait to begin in-person instruction until at least September 28th. Schools will begin with virtual-only instruction until this date.

“The recommendation is one I’m making as a governor, but one I have to live with as a dad, too,” said Beshear. “In my very core, I want us to get back to in-person instruction.”

Governor Beshear cited four reasons for this new school recommendation:

  • The current surge in Kentucky
  • A significant increase in infection rate in children across the U.S.
  • Experiences occurring in other states (Ex. Georgia and Indiana)
  • Kentuckians continue to go to states where travel advisory asks them not to (vacations)

Lieutenant Governor Jacqueline Coleman and Dr. Steven Stack also spoke in support of the new school recommendation, saying that beginning with virtual-only instruction is the safest option for students and educators. The state says they will be flexible to allow schools to choose whether they want to adjust schedules or

“Will it be popular? I don’t know, but I know it’s the right thing to do right now,” said Beshear.

Beshear said while this is only a recommendation, he urges districts to work with him on this. The governor said these recommendations do not apply to higher education or universities.

In regards to fall sports, the governor said the KHSAA will meet tomorrow to discuss options. Beshear said that he does not want to make a blanket comparison between schools and sports because the scenarios are different. He said some fall sports will be a major challenge, and in high-risk situations he said there may need to be a consideration of moving these sports to spring.

Governor Beshear also noted that a computer issue will cause a delay in number processing and artificially low readings of numbers early this week, an issue that will be resolved later this week. He announced 275 new cases and two new deaths on Monday, but noted that number will be revised later this week. Additionally, The previous calculations that the total number of cases last week was lowered may also be artificially lowered. He said IT maintenance will mean Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday may be off this week but will be correctly provided later this week.

The governor also issued a new executive order for bars and restaurants:

  • Bars and restaurants can reopen at 50% capacity
  • All food and drink service will stop at 10 p.m. with all businesses closing by 11 p.m.
  • Everyone should remain seated at tables with no congregation at bar or in common areas.
  • New guidelines begin Tuesday, August 11th
  • Mask mandate must be enforced

Governor Beshear also said he is working with Churchill Downs to create a safe environment for the Kentucky Derby and hopes to provide more information later this week.

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(This story was originally published on Aug. 10, 2020)


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