SCHOOL UPDATES AND LINKS: (click on the blue links to see information)
UPDATE FROM ME Department of Education 10/7/2020:
Dear Champions of Education,
We have two updates to provide to you here – the first is regarding the Governor’s Executive Order #14 and the second offers guidance for utilizing CRF for school bus purchases.
- Executive Order #14
On Tuesday, October 6 Governor Janet Mills announced that Maine is entering Stage 4 of our Reopening plan, providing updated language on mask wearing and indoor space gathering capacity. To read the Executive Order in its entirety, see here. What this means for schools:
- Beginning on Tuesday, Oct. 13th, indoor group size limits will increase from the current 50 people to a maximum of 100 people in any one area, room, or space (up to 50% capacity of the room – or 100 in total … whichever is fewer). This expansion of allowable capacity only applies where people are still able to maintain distancing and only in situations where seating is provided and people are required to be seated. So, it is possible that schools could expand cafeteria capacity or hold larger gatherings in spaces with larger capacity – just as long as everyone is seated and masks are worn and physical distancing is maintained.
- If not everyone will be seated, the 50-person indoor gather limit applies.
- Cloth face coverings that cover nose and mouth are recommended, for children ages 2-4, and are required for all people age 5 and up in all school settings, both public and private.
- Face coverings (cloth facemasks) must be worn in all publicly accessible areas of schools and everywhere on school grounds (parking lots, playgrounds, walkways, entryways, etc).
- Those excepted from wearing cloth face coverings, and who may use an alternative such as a plastic face shield as defined in our Framework and guidance documents, include: those with documented medical conditions, such as trouble with breathing; those who are unable to put on or take off a mask without assistance; and those who have documented developmental conditions that are complicated or worsened by wearing a cloth face covering. An exception may also be made while an individual is engaged in vigorous exercise as part of a voluntary extracurricular sports activity.
- Nothing in this Order should be interpreted as preventing a school from making accommodations on an individualized basis to the extent required by state or federal disabilities law.
*As described in U.S. CDC guidance, a cloth face covering covers the nose and mouth and fits snugly but comfortably against the side of the face; is secured with ties or ear loops; includes multiple layers of fabric; allows for breathing without restriction; and is able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to its shape.