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High schools in Michigan can reopen for in-person instruction after holiday break

Empty classroom covid-19
Posted at 12:27 PM, Dec 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-18 13:40:09-05

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration will lift a prohibition on in-person instruction at Michigan high schools, letting them reopen Jan. 4 after the holiday break following a decline in coronavirus cases.

Related: Indoor dining to remain closed through mid January, movie theaters, casinos & more can reopen
Related: Read the Michigan epidemic order keeping in-person dining closed, reopening some businesses

Gov. Whitmer made the announcement on Friday afternoon. Other businesses can reopen as well, but in-person dining will remain banned until at least mid-January.

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High schools have been virtual since Nov. 18 following a spike in COVID-19 cases statewide. The state health department's order expires at the end of Sunday, though much of it could be extended.

The order also has prohibited indoor restaurant dining and in-person classes at colleges, closed entertainment venues, and barred organized sports.

State officials this week reported progress in the fight against the virus, saying new cases continue to decline and that Michigan has seen no spike related to Thanksgiving travel. They warned, though, that the case rate remains high.

High school athletics that are non-contact and played outdoors can also resume, according to Whitmer.

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