The Maryland State Board of Education wants all students to have the option to return to the classroom full-time next school year.
The board unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday night, saying schools must be able to provide at least 180 days of in-person learning to all students starting in fall 2021. The resolution says teachers must be in classrooms.
School districts will be allowed to ask the state board for exemptions.
The resolution would force schools to reopen for in-person classes, but board members said they could change course depending on how the pandemic progresses, WTOP reported.
Right now, Maryland ranks low for in-person learning opportunities, ahead of only Washington state, California and Hawaii, according to community event tracking website Burbio.
Gov. Larry Hogan said in a statement that the vote is an important step toward returning to normal.
“The science supports getting our children back into school for in-person learning,” Hogan said. “Families and students deserve certainty that all school systems will return to full in-person learning.”