COVID-19

Provision of preK12 education for the 2020–2021 school year

 

The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death. It is caused by a new strain of coronavirus not previously identified in humans and easily spread from person to person. There is currently no approved vaccine or antiviral treatment for this disease.

 

On March 10, 2020, the Department of Health and Human Services identified the first two presumptive-positive cases of COVID-19 in Michigan. On that same day, I issued Executive Order 2020-4. This order declared a state of emergency across the state of Michigan under section 1 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, the Emergency Management Act, 1976 PA 390, as amended (EMA), MCL 30.401 et seq., and the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945, 1945 PA 302, as amended (EPGA), MCL 10.31 et seq.

 

Since then, the virus spread across Michigan, bringing deaths in the thousands, confirmed cases in the tens of thousands, and deep disruption to this state’s economy, homes, and educational, civic, social, and religious institutions. On April 1, 2020, in response to the widespread and severe health, economic, and social harms posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, I issued Executive Order 2020-33. This order expanded on Executive Order 2020-4 and declared both a state of emergency and a state of disaster across the State of Michigan under section 1 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, the Emergency Management Act, and the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945. And on April 30, 2020, finding that COVID-19 had created emergency and disaster conditions across the State of Michigan, I issued Executive Order 2020-67 to continue the emergency declaration under the EPA, as well as Executive Order 2020-68 to issue new emergency and disaster declarations under the EMA.

 

Those executive orders have been challenged in Michigan House of Representatives and Michigan Senate v. Whitmer. On May 21, 2020, the Court of Claims ruled that Executive Order 2020-67 is a valid exercise of authority under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act but that Executive Order 2020-68 is not a valid exercise of authority under the Emergency Management Act. Both of those rulings are being challenged on appeal.

 

 

On June 18, 2020, I issued Executive Order 2020-127, again finding that the COVID-19 pandemic constitutes a disaster and emergency throughout the State of Michigan. That order constituted a state of emergency declaration under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945. And, to the extent the governor may declare a state of emergency and a state of disaster under the Emergency Management Act when emergency and disaster conditions exist yet the legislature had declined to grant an extension request, that order also constituted a state of emergency and state of disaster declaration under that act.

 

The Emergency Powers of the Governor Act provides a sufficient legal basis for issuing this executive order. In relevant part, it provides that, after declaring a state of emergency, “the governor may promulgate reasonable orders, rules, and regulations as he or she considers necessary to protect life and property or to bring the emergency situation within the affected area under control.” MCL 10.31(1).

 

Nevertheless, subject to the ongoing litigation and the possibility that current rulings may be overturned or otherwise altered on appeal, I also invoke the Emergency Management Act as a basis for executive action to combat the spread of COVID-19 and mitigate the effects of this emergency on the people of Michigan, with the intent to preserve the rights and protections provided by the EMA. The EMA vests the governor with broad powers and duties to “cop[e] with dangers to this state or the people of this state presented by a disaster or emergency,” which the governor may implement through “executive orders, proclamations, and directives having the force and effect of law.” MCL 30.403(1)–(2). This executive order falls within the scope of those powers and duties, and to the extent the governor may declare a state of emergency and a state of disaster under the Emergency Management Act when emergency and disaster conditions exist yet the legislature has not granted an extension request, they too provide a sufficient legal basis for this order.

 

To suppress the spread of COVID-19 and prevent the state’s health care system from becoming overwhelmed, it was reasonable and necessary on March 13, 2020 to issue Executive Order 2020-5, which temporarily closed schools. That order was followed by Executive Order 2020-35 on April 2, 2020, and then Executive Order 2020-65 on April 30, 2020, closing in-person instruction for the remainder of the school year and providing for continuity of learning plans. Although the virus has remained aggressive and persistent, those orders were a key piece of the infection-suppression strategy that curtailed the spread of the COVID-19 in Michigan. Where Michigan was once among the states most heavily hit, our per-capita case rate is now roughly equivalent to the national average.

 

This executive order provides a structure to support all schools in Michigan as they plan for a return of preK-12 education in the fall. Under the order, school districts must adopt a COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan laying out how they will cope with the disease across the various phases of the Michigan Safe Start Plan. In turn, the accompanying Michigan Return to School Roadmap offers a guide to the types of safety protocols appropriate during each phase. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution: what works in Lansing may not work in Sault Sainte Marie. Districts will retain flexibility to tailor their instruction to their particular needs and to the disease conditions present in their regions.

 

In the coming weeks and months, I will be working closely with the legislature to develop a comprehensive return-to-school plan that meets the needs of Michigan students while protecting students, families, and communities from the risk of infection. In the meantime, this executive order and the Return to School Roadmap will provide the scaffolding for districts to develop their plans for getting our kids back in the classroom.

 

 

Acting under the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, I order the following:

 

  1. Coronavirus relief funds under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act will be provided and may be used for districts to aid in developing, adopting, and following a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan under section 2 of this order.

 

  1. Preparedness Plan. Every school district and nonpublic school must develop and adopt a COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan (“Preparedness Plan”) that is informed by the Michigan Return to School Roadmap from the COVID-19 Task Force on Education and Return to School Advisory Council (“Return to School Roadmap”). The plan must, at a minimum:

 

  1. Describe the policies and procedures that the district will follow when the region in which the district is located is in Phase 1, 2, or 3 of the Michigan Safe Start Plan. (Nonpublic schools are exempt from this subsection.) Those policies and procedures must, at a minimum:

 

  1. Require the closure of school buildings to anyone except:

 

  1. District employees or contractors necessary to conduct minimum basic school operations consistent with a Preparedness Plan, including those employers or contractors necessary to facilitate alternative modes of instruction, such as distributing materials and equipment, or performing other necessary in-person functions.

 

  1. Food-service workers preparing food for distribution to students or their families.

 

  1. Licensed child-care providers and the families that they serve.

 

  1. Suspend athletics, after-school activities, inter-school activities (e.g., debate competitions), and busing.

 

  1. Offer alternative modes of instruction other than in-person instruction and a summary of materials each student and the student’s parents or guardians will need to meaningfully access the alternative modes of instruction included in the Preparedness Plan. If the Preparedness Plan relies on electronic instruction, the Preparedness Plan must consider how the district will aid students who lack access to computers or to the internet.

 

  1. Provide for the continuation of food distribution to eligible students.

 

  1. Provide for the continued pay of school employees while redeploying staff to provide meaningful work in the context of the Preparedness Plan, subject to any applicable requirements of a collective bargaining agreement.

 

  1. Describe the policies and procedures that the district will follow when the region in which the district is located is in Phase 4 of the Michigan Safe Start Plan. Those policies and procedures must, at a minimum:

 

  1. Require the wearing of face coverings, except during meals and unless face coverings cannot be medically tolerated, for:

 

  1. All staff and all students in grades pre-kindergarten and up when on a school bus.

 

  1. All staff and all students in grades pre-kindergarten and up when in indoor hallways and common areas.

 

  1. All staff when in classrooms.

 

  1. All students in grades 6 and up when in classrooms.

 

  1. All students in grades kindergarten through 5 unless students remain with their classes throughout the school day and do not come into close contact with students in another class.

 

  1. Prohibit indoor assemblies that bring together students from more than one classroom.

 

  1. Incorporate the Return to School Roadmap’s required protocols governing hygiene, cleaning, athletics, screening, testing protocols, and busing and student transportation.

 

  1. Describe the policies and procedures that the district will follow when the region in which the district is located is in Phase 5 of the Michigan Safe Start Plan.

 

  1. Address each subpart of the Return to School Roadmap and indicate if a school plans to exclude any protocol that is highly recommended.

 

  1. Preparation and Approval.

 

  1. If a district lacks the capacity to implement a Preparedness Plan on its own, a district may partner with one or more other districts or intermediate districts. A district may enter into one or more cooperative agreements under section 11a(4) of the Revised School Code, MCL 380.11a(4), to provide for implementation of a Preparedness Plan.

 

  1. By August 15, 2020 or seven days before the start of the school year for students, whichever comes first:

 

  1. The local school district board (or, for public school academies, the public school academy board of directors) must approve a district’s Preparedness Plan.

 

  1. The chief or designated administrator of a nonpublic school must approve a nonpublic school’s Preparedness Plan.

 

  1. By August 17, 2020:

 

  1. Intermediate school districts must collect Preparedness Plans from all of the school boards of their constituent districts and transmit such plans, at the same time to the extent possible, to the Superintendent of Public Instruction (“Superintendent”) and to the State Treasurer.

 

  1. Authorizing bodies must collect plans from all of the public school academy boards of directors that they authorize and transmit such plans, at the same time to the extent possible, to the Superintendent and to the State Treasurer.

 

  1. The chief or designated administrator of a nonpublic school must transmit copies of approved Preparedness Plans to the Superintendent.

 

  1. By August 17, 2020, districts and nonpublic schools must prominently post their approved Preparedness Plans on the home page of their public internet sites.

 

  1. Special Education

 

  1. When a district provides in-person instruction to its students without disabilities, the district must also provide in-person instruction to its students with disabilities, consistent with their individualized education plans.

 

  1. When schools are closed to in-person instruction, districts must strive in good faith and to the extent practicable, based upon available resources, technology, training, and curriculum, as well as the circumstances presented by COVID-19, to provide equal access to any alternative modes of instruction to students with disabilities from birth through age 26. This includes the provision of auxiliary services under section 1296 of the Revised School Code, MCL 380.1296.

 

  1. While any state of emergency or disaster related to the COVID-19 pandemic continues, districts shall comply with guidance from the United States Department of Education, including its Office of Civil Rights and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, and the Michigan Department of Education concerning the delivery of alternative modes of instruction to students with disabilities in light of the impact of COVID-19.

 

  1. Districts shall, to the extent practicable and necessary, make individualized determinations whether and to what extent compensatory services may be needed for students in light of the school closures during the 2019–2020 school year.

 

  1. The state will not penalize a district or a nonpublic school that has been allocated federal funds for the purpose of providing special education services due to a school’s inability to provide those services on account of a school closure prompted by a COVID-19 state of emergency or disaster.

 

  1. Federally Required Assessments. By July 15, 2020, the Superintendent is strongly encouraged to request by letter that the U.S. Department of Education waive the requirement that Michigan students take assessments as a condition of continued receipt of funding under the Every Student Succeeds Act.

 

  1. Implementation.

 

  1. All provisions of Executive Order 2020-65 suspending strict compliance with the School Aid Act or the Revised School Code for the 2019–2020 school year—including all provisions in Part I(2) through Part I(13) and all provisions in Parts IV, VII, VIII, and IX—remain in effect through the fiscal year ending September 30, 2020.

 

  1. Except as provided for in subsection (a) of this section, Executive Order 2020-65 is rescinded.

 

  1. The limitation on the size of indoor social gatherings and events in section 5 of Executive Order 2020-110 or any executive order that may follow from it does not apply to students in a classroom setting.

 

  1. All schools, public and private, are subject to the rules governing workplace safeguards established in section 1 of Executive Order 2020-114.

 

  1. For purposes of this order, a district that straddles regions will be treated as if it were located solely in the region designated as higher risk.

 

  1. All schools, public and private, must cooperate with the local public health department if a confirmed case of COVID-19 is identified, and in particular must collect the contact information for any close contacts of the affected individual from two days before he or she showed symptoms to the time when he or she was last present at the school.

 

  1. A district or nonpublic school without an approved Preparedness Plan is not permitted to open or to continue in operation for in-person instruction for the 2020–2021 school year.

 

  1. To mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on educational outcomes, a district may adopt year-round school or a year-round program for the 2020–2021 school year or start the 2020–2021 school year before the first Monday in September.

 

  1. Any closure of schools relating to COVID-19 shall not affect an employer contribution, employee contribution, or the accrual of service credit under the Public School Employees Retirement Act of 1979, 1980 PA 300, as amended, MCL 38.1301 to 38.1467.

 

  1. For a district with a collective bargaining agreement, this order must be implemented by the district in a manner consistent with the collective bargaining agreement.

 

  1. When the Michigan Department of Education or the Superintendent issues a waiver or suspends an administrative rule pursuant to this order or Executive Order 2020-65, the Superintendent must provide the governor in writing with a copy of the waiver and information relating to the issuance or suspension. Any waiver issued by the Superintendent under Part VII of Executive Order 2020-65 continues in effect through the end of the fiscal year unless otherwise rescinded by the Superintendent.

 

  1. Definitions.

 

  1. “Alternative modes of instruction” means modes of student instruction, other than in-person instruction, that may include, without limitation, partnerships with other districts or intermediate districts or community colleges or institutions of higher education, use of vendors, use of online learning, telephone communications, email, virtual instruction, videos, slideshows, project-based learning, use of instructional packets, or a hybrid of multiple modes of learning that still promote recommended practices for social distancing to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

 

  1. “District” means a school district established under the Revised School Code or a public school academy. “District” does not include an intermediate district, except for an intermediate district that educates PreK–12 students.

 

  1. “Intermediate district” means an intermediate school district established under part 7 of the Revised School Code, MCL 380.601 to 380.705b.

 

  1. “Public school academy” means that term as defined in section 5 of the Revised School Code, MCL 380.5.

 

  1. “Superintendent of Public Instruction” or “Superintendent” means the superintendent of public instruction described in section 3 of article 8 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.

Provision of K–12 education during the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year

 

Rescission of Executive Order 2020-35

 

The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease that can result in serious illness or death. It is caused by a new strain of coronavirus not previously identified in humans and easily spread from person to person. There is currently no approved vaccine or antiviral treatment for this disease.

 

On March 10, 2020, the Department of Health and Human Services identified the first two presumptive-positive cases of COVID-19 in Michigan. On that same day, I issued Executive Order 2020-4. This order declared a state of emergency across the state of Michigan under section 1 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, the Emergency Management Act, 1976 PA 390, as amended, MCL 30.401 et seq., and the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945, 1945 PA 302, as amended, MCL 10.31 et seq.

 

In the three weeks that followed, the virus spread across Michigan, bringing deaths in the hundreds, confirmed cases in the thousands, and deep disruption to this state’s economy, homes, and educational, civic, social, and religious institutions. On April 1, 2020, in response to the widespread and severe health, economic, and social harms posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, I issued Executive Order 2020-33. This order expanded on Executive Order 2020-4 and declared both a state of emergency and a state of disaster across the state of Michigan under section 1 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, the Emergency Management Act, and the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945.

 

The Emergency Management Act vests the governor with broad powers and duties to “cop[e] with dangers to this state or the people of this state presented by a disaster or emergency,” which the governor may implement through “executive orders, proclamations, and directives having the force and effect of law.” MCL 30.403(1)-(2). Similarly, the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945 provides that, after declaring a state of emergency, “the governor may promulgate reasonable orders, rules, and regulations as he or she considers necessary to protect life and property or to bring the emergency situation within the affected area under control.” MCL 10.31(1).

 

 

 

Section 1 of article 8 of the Michigan Constitution provides that “schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged.” Although the COVID-19 pandemic has required the closure of elementary and secondary schools throughout the state for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year, schools must continue to provide students the highest level of educational opportunities possible under the difficult circumstances before us. We must therefore enable schools and students to innovate and adapt, and not allow these efforts to be inhibited by requirements and restrictions that are misplaced in this time of unprecedented crisis.

 

Executive Order 2020-35 provided such relief. Among other things, that order suspended all in-person instruction in our K–12 schools for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year. It also provided for continuity of learning to the greatest extent possible during this unprecedented time, and temporarily suspended strict compliance with certain rules and procedures under the Revised School Code and the State School Aid Act of 1979. This order extends and clarifies that relief, as it remains reasonable and necessary to suppress the spread of COVID-19 and protect the public health and safety of this state and its residents. It also expands that relief to temporarily suspend certain requirements under the Teachers’ Tenure Act, 1937 PA 4 (Ex. Sess), as amended, MCL 38.71 et seq., and for the Great Start Readiness Program, MCL 388.1632 and 388.1639, as it is reasonable and necessary to ensure that the COVID-19 pandemic does not frustrate this state’s ability to retain talented teachers or eliminate opportunities to assist at-risk preschool children in becoming ready for school.

 

With this order, Executive Order 2020-35 is rescinded.

 

Acting under the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, I order the following:

 

  1. Suspension of in-person K–12 instruction, GSRP program delivery, and early childhood programs for the remainder of 2019–2020 school year
  1. Except as provided in section III of this order, in-person instruction for pupils in kindergarten through grade 12 (“K–12”) is suspended for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year and school buildings used for the provision of K–12 education must remain closed for the purpose of providing K–12 education in person for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year. K–12 school sports activities and other in-person extracurricular school activities are suspended while any state of emergency or state of disaster prompted by COVID-19 is in effect. This section applies to all public, nonpublic, and boarding schools in the state.
  2. For a district implementing a Continuity of Learning and COVID-19 Response Plan (“CoL Plan”) pursuant to section II of this order, all of the following apply:

(a)  Strict compliance with rules and procedures under subdivisions (d) to (f) of subsection (3) of section 101 of the State School Aid Act of 1979 (“School Aid Act”), 1979 PA 94, as amended, MCL 388.1701(3)(d) to (f), is temporarily suspended for the period beginning on March 11, 2020 and ending on the last day of the 2019–2020 school year, to the extent necessary to waive any requirement that a district have a minimum number of the district’s membership in attendance on any day of pupil instruction and to waive any requirement that a district report the percentage of the district’s membership in attendance to the Department of Education (“Department”).

(b) Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 101(3)(a), 101(3)(b), 101(4), 101(6), and 101(10) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701(3)(a), 388.1701(3)(b), 388.1701(4), 388.1701(6), and 388.1701(10), requiring a district to provide at least 1,098 hours and 180 days of pupil instruction, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to provide for the following exceptions to that requirement:

(1)  In addition to counting as hours and days of pupil instruction under section 101(4) the first six days or the equivalent number of hours for which pupil instruction is not provided because of conditions not within the control of school authorities, the Department shall count up to 13 additional days or the equivalent number of hours for which pupil instruction is not provided due to a closure of schools pursuant to an executive order issued by the governor in response to the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster.

(2)  Under section 101(10), a district may also count an additional five days or the equivalent number of hours used for the purpose of preparing to provide and providing instruction by alternative modes of instruction pursuant to a CoL Plan as days or an equivalent number of hours of pupil instruction.

(c)  Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 101(9) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701(9), is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to permit a district that has a Department-approved alternative education program or another innovative program approved by the Department under MCL 388.1701(9) and that does not use a 100% online model of delivery approved before the effective date of this order to use the additional exceptions provided for in section I.2(b) of this order in satisfying the number of days and hours of instruction required under a waiver granted by the Department under section 101(9).

(d)  Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 101(9) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701(9), is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to waive the minimum number of hours and days of pupil instruction required under section 101(3) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701(3), for any district with a CoL Plan approved under section II of this order. A district with a CoL Plan approved under section II of this order will be considered to be operating a Department-approved alternative education program or another innovative program approved by the Department for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year only. A district with a CoL Plan approved under section II of this order is not subject to forfeiture of money under section 101 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701. If the district does not comply substantially with the terms of the CoL Plan, the amount of any forfeiture under MCL 388.1701 will be calculated based on a comparison of the number of hours and days of pupil instruction provided to the minimum number of hours and days of pupil instruction required under MCL 388.1701(3), as affected by this order. A district with a CoL Plan approved under section II of this order is not required to report to the Center the pupils enrolled in a Department-approved alternative education program under MCL 388.1701(9).

3.   A school of excellence that is a cyber school, as defined in section 551 of the Revised School Code (“School Code”), 1976 PA 451, as amended, MCL 380.551, and is in compliance with section 553a of the School Code, MCL 380.553a, may continue to educate pupils in a manner consistent with section I.A of this order, and continues to be exempt from the requirements of subsections (3) and (8) of section 101 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1701(3) and (8).

4.   If before March 11, 2020, a district was providing nonessential elective courses to nonpublic school pupils, homeschool pupils, or both at either a district, intermediate district, or nonpublic school site pursuant to section 166b of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1766b, and is able to continue to offer the nonessential elective courses through alternative modes of instruction, then the district may, to the extent feasible, provide for such courses in its CoL Plan and continue to offer the nonessential elective courses to nonpublic school and/or homeschool pupils through alternative modes of instruction for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year.

5.   Nothing in this order alters the inapplicability of subsections (3) and (8) of section 101 of the School Aid Act, MCL 380.1701(3) and (8), to eligible pupils enrolled in a dropout recovery program that meets the requirements of section 23a of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1623a. As used in this section, “eligible pupil” means that term as defined in MCL 388.1623a.

6.   The approval of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (“Superintendent”) or the Department is not required for a district to make use of a waiver provided for under section I.2 of this order.

7.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 6(7)(b) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1606(7)(b), is temporarily suspended to eliminate the requirement during the 2019–2020 school year for a district or intermediate district maintaining school during the entire school year to use the fourth Wednesday in April as a pupil membership count day.

8.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 1284 and 1284a of the School Code, MCL 380.1284 and 380.1284a, is temporarily suspended as necessary to facilitate implementation of section I of this order.

9.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 104b(4)(b) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1704b(4)(b), is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to permit a district to include each day that a pupil is deemed in attendance under section I of this order or pursuant to a CoL Plan under section II of this order as a day the pupil was in attendance at school during the 2019–2020 school year for purposes of MCL 388.1704b(4)(b).

10. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 29.19 of the Fire Prevention Code, 1941 PA 207, as amended, MCL 29.19, is temporarily suspended for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year as follows:

(a)  All requirements that a district or intermediate district conduct a minimum number of fire drills, lockdown drills, and tornado drills during the 2019–2020 school year, or conduct such drills after March 11, 2020 and before the end of the 2019–2020 school year, as required under section 19(2) to (6), MCL 29.19(2) to (6), are waived.

(b)  All requirements that a district or intermediate district record or publish documentation pertaining to scheduled and completed fire drills and tornado drills that otherwise would have been required after March 11, 2020, as required under sections 19(1) and (8), MCL 29.19(1) and (8), are waived.

(c)  All requirements for rescheduling drills scheduled after March 11, 2020 but not conducted, and for notifying emergency management coordinators and law enforcement agencies, as required under section 19(8), MCL 29.19(8), are waived.

11. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 1169, 1506 and 1507(6) of the School Code, MCL 380.1169, 380.1506, and 380.1507(6), and section 166a(1) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1766a(1), is temporarily suspended for the 2019–2020 school year so as to waive instruction requirements unmet by a district prior to March 11, 2020, except as described in the district’s approved CoL Plan.

  1. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 1561 and 1577 to 1599 of the School Code, MCL 380.1561 and MCL 380.1577 to 380.1599, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to waive all compulsory attendance requirements and enforcement measures for the 2019–2020 school year, consistent with this order and a district’s CoL Plan.
  2. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1170a(1) of the School Code, MCL 380.1170a(1), is temporarily suspended for the 2019–2020 school year so as to waive psychomotor skills instruction requirements, except as described in the district’s approved CoL Plan.

 

II.        CoL Plans (including addenda for early childhood programs)

1.   A CoL Plan must include all of the following elements:

(a)  A description of the methods a district will use to provide alternative modes of instruction other than in-person instruction and a summary of materials each pupil and the pupil’s parents or guardians will need to meaningfully access the alternative modes of instruction included in the CoL Plan. If the CoL Plan relies on electronic instruction, the CoL Plan must ensure to the extent feasible that pupils have access to a device capable of accessing the electronic instruction and must not penalize a pupil for the pupil’s inability to fully participate.

(b)  A description of the methods a district will use to keep pupils at the center of educational activities, including outreach to continue building relationships and maintain connections, and to help pupils feel safe and valued.

(c)  A description of plans to deliver content in multiple ways so that all pupils can access learning.

(d)  A description of plans to manage and monitor learning by pupils.

(e)  A budget outline estimating additional expenditures associated with the CoL Plan and sources of revenue to pay for those expenditures.

(f)   A description of the manner in which district administrators, board members, teachers, and any representatives of teachers collaborated in development of the CoL Plan.

(g)  A description of methods the district will use to notify pupils and parents or guardians of the CoL Plan.

(h)  A best estimate of the date on which the district will begin implementation of the CoL Plan, which must be no later than April 28, 2020.

2.   A CoL Plan must do all of the following:

(a)  Provide for assistance, to the extent feasible, to pupils enrolled in any postsecondary dual enrollment courses under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act, 1996 PA 160, as amended, MCL 388.511 to 388.524, and the Career and Technical Preparation Act, 2000 PA 258, as amended, MCL 388.1901 to 388.1913, in completing the courses during the 2019–2020 school year.

(b)  Provide or arrange for continuation of food distribution to eligible pupils.

(c)  Continue to pay school employees while redeploying staff to provide meaningful work in the context of the CoL Plan, subject to any applicable requirements of a collective bargaining agreement.

(d)  Provide for evaluation of participation in the CoL Plan by pupils.

(e)  Provide mental health supports to pupils affected by a state of emergency or state of disaster prompted by COVID-19.

(f)   Provide for the district to support the efforts of the intermediate district in which the district is located to mobilize disaster relief childcare centers as described in Executive Order 2020-51 or any executive order that may follow it.

(g) Any CoL Plan adopted by an intermediate district pursuant to section II.6 of this order shall include a plan for early childhood services, including Great Start Readiness Program, compliant with the requirements of section II.16 of this order and guidance issued by the Department. For purposes of this section, the Early Childhood Plan may be incorporated in the original CoL Plan submitted for approval or submitted for approval as an amendment or addendum to the district’s currently approved CoL Plan.

3.   A CoL Plan may provide for the adoption of a balanced calendar instructional program for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year and planning for the adoption of a balanced calendar instructional program for the 2020–2021 school year.

4.   A district may contract with one or more providers for implementation of a CoL Plan.

5.   If a district lacks the capacity to implement a CoL Plan on its own, a district may partner with one or more other districts or intermediate districts. A district may enter into one or more cooperative agreements under section 11a(4) of the School Code, MCL 380.11a(4), to provide for implementation of a CoL Plan.

6.   For a district that is not a public school academy, the district’s CoL Plan must be approved by the intermediate superintendent of the intermediate district in which the district is located. For a district that is a public school academy, the district’s CoL Plan must be approved by the authorizing body of the public school academy or the authorizing body’s designee for the purpose of administering contracts with public school academies. For a public school academy that by agreement provides public educational services for the residents of a district that does not directly provide public educational services to its residents, the public school academy’s CoL Plan must be approved by the intermediate superintendent of the intermediate district in which the public school academy is located. If an intermediate district educates K–12 students, the intermediate district may adopt a CoL Plan for those activities and implement the CoL Plan once adopted. A school of excellence that is a cyber school, as defined in section 551 of the School Code, MCL 380.551, and is in compliance with section 553a of the School Code, MCL 380.553a, may continue to educate pupils under its charter contract which will be that school’s CoL Plan.

7.   An intermediate district or an authorizing body shall approve a CoL Plan submitted by a district if the CoL Plan complies with the requirements of section II of this order and if the intermediate district or authorizing body believes the CoL Plan represents a good-faith effort to provide adequate alternative modes of instruction given the limitations resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and accompanying response efforts. Intermediate districts and authorizing bodies must allow for flexibility and presume that a CoL Plan submitted by a district will be implemented to the best of the district’s ability.

8.   Intermediate districts and authorizing bodies shall transmit copies of approved CoL Plans to the Superintendent and to the State Treasurer. If a district or intermediate district maintains a public internet site, the district or intermediate district shall post its approved CoL Plan on the internet site.

9.   An intermediate district may enter into a cooperative agreement with one or more other intermediate districts for the purpose of reviewing and approving CoL Plans under this order.

10. An intermediate district or authorizing body that reviews and approves or disapproves CoL Plans on its own or with others pursuant to section II of this order will be eligible for any additional funding appropriated to support these activities. An intermediate district or authorizing body that does not review and approve or disapprove CoL Plans will not be eligible for any additional funding appropriated.

11. Intermediate districts and authorizing bodies must be prepared to review and approve or reject CoL Plans beginning on April 8, 2020.

12. A district with an approved CoL Plan is eligible to receive continued payments from the State School Aid Fund for the 2019–2020 school year.

13. A district that is not a public school academy may amend its CoL Plan with the approval of the intermediate superintendent of the intermediate district in which the school district is located. A district that is a public school academy may amend its CoL Plan with the approval of its authorizing body or its designee. For a public school academy that by agreement provides public educational services for the residents of a district that does not directly provide public educational services to the residents on its own, the public school academy’s CoL Plan may be amended with the approval of the intermediate superintendent of the intermediate district in which the public school academy is located.

14. Decisions regarding the awarding of credit, the issuance of grades, and the use of pass or fail designations will be made at the district level by districts with due recognition of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

15. State-approved nonpublic schools and parents and guardians homeschooling students are encouraged to do all of the following:

(a)  Offer all students electronic, other remote, or home-based instruction, to the extent feasible, for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year, including course offerings provided by the Michigan Virtual School.

(b)  Coordinate with districts providing nonessential elective courses under section 166b of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1766b, to any of their students for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year.

(c)  Assist eligible nonpublic school students to complete postsecondary dual enrollment courses, to the extent feasible, under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act, 1996 PA 160, as amended, MCL 388.511 et seq., and the Career and Technical Preparation Act, 2000 PA 258, as amended, MCL 388.1901 et seq.

(d)  Take actions necessary to continue to receive any federal funding previously allocated in a manner consistent with applicable federal law.

16. An intermediate school district that is an approved grantee of Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) funding under sections 1632d and 1639 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1632d and 388.1639, for the 2019–2020 school year shall maintain records of approved subrecipient plans for continuing the GSRP for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year. The intermediate school district is responsible for ensuring all subrecipients, including community-based providers, create a GSRP plan. Subrecipient plans may be incorporated in the original CoL Plan submitted for approval or may be submitted for approval as an amendment or addendum to the district’s currently approved CoL Plan. Plans must include, at a minimum:

(a)  A description of plans to provide and document, at a minimum, how all members of the GSRP teaching team will engage on an ongoing basis with enrolled children and their families, through the most convenient communication method for the family in light of COVID-19-related orders and guidance, and, as appropriate, provide children and their families plans for the transition from GSRP to kindergarten. This outreach must include a virtual conference with the family.

(b)  A description of how GSRP funds and resources will be used to implement a modified program that is developmentally appropriate for the strengths, interests, and needs of each individualized child.

(c)  A best estimate of the date on which subrecipients will begin implementation of the GSRP plan, which must be no later than May 7, 2020.

III.      District employees permitted in district buildings

1.   Notwithstanding the closure of school buildings under Executive Order 2020-11 or any executive order that may follow it, district employees or contractors necessary to conduct minimum basic school operations consistent with a CoL Plan, including those employers or contractors necessary to facilitate alternative modes of instruction, such as distributing materials and equipment, or performing other necessary in-person functions, are permitted to be physically present in district buildings, as determined by district administrators. District employees and contractors performing these functions are considered to be performing necessary government activities for purposes of Executive Order 2020-59 or any executive order that may follow it. Districts must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect district employees and contractors, including all of the following:

(a)  Restricting the number of employees and contractors present in a district building to no more than is strictly necessary to perform the activities authorized by section III of this order.

(b)  Promoting remote work to the fullest extent possible.

(c)  Keeping employees and contractors in a district building at least six feet from one another to the maximum extent possible.

(d)  Increasing standards of district building cleaning and disinfection to limit employee and contractor exposure to COVID-19, as well as adopting protocols to clean and disinfect in the event of a positive COVID-19 case in a district building.

(e)  Adopting policies to prevent employees and contractors from entering the premises if they display respiratory symptoms or have had contact with a person who is known or suspected to have contracted COVID-19.

(f)   Any other social distancing practices and mitigation measures relating to COVID-19 recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

2.   A district may permit parents and guardians of pupils to visit school property for the purpose of obtaining materials and equipment pursuant to a CoL Plan and using the same social distancing and other mitigation measures required for district employees and contractors under section III.1 of this order. Parents or guardians leaving their homes or residences for this purpose are considered to be obtaining necessary services or supplies for purposes of Executive Order 2020-59 or any executive order that may follow it.

3.   Any childcare workers at a childcare located within a district building (including workers at disaster relief childcare centers), are permitted to be physically present in district buildings, as determined by district administrators and to the extent permitted by Executive Order 2020-59 or any executive order that may follow it.

IV.       Assessments

1.   CoL Plans are not required to address the following provisions of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (“ESEA”) that have been waived by the United States Department of Education for the 2019–2020 school year pursuant to section 8401(b) of the ESEA, 20 USC 7861(b):

(a)  Assessment requirements under section 1111(b)(2) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(b)(2).

(b)  Report card provisions related to certain assessments and accountability in section 1111(h) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h) based on data from the 2019–2020 school year, including all of the following:

(1)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(i) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(i) (accountability system description).

(2)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(ii) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(ii) (assessment results).

(3)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(iii)(I) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(iii)(I) (other academic indicator results).

(4)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(iv) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(iv) (English language proficiency assessment results).

(5)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(v) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(v) (school quality or student success indicator results).

(6)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(vi) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(vi) (progress toward meeting long-terms goals and measurements of interim progress).

(7)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(vii) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(vii) (percentage of students assessed and not assessed).

(8)  Section 1111(h)(1)(C)(xi) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C)(xi), (number and percentage of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities taking an alternate assessment).

(9)  Section 1111(h)(2) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(2), with respect to all waived requirements in section 1111(h)(1)(C) of ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(1)(C).

(10)Section 1111(h)(2)(C)(i) and (ii) of the ESEA, 20 USC 6311(h)(2)(C)(i) and (ii) (information showing how students in a local educational agency (“LEA”) and each school, respectively, achieved on the academic assessments compared to students in Michigan and the LEA).

2.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1279g of the School Code, MCL 380.1279g, and section 104b of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1704b, requiring a district to administer during the 2019–2020 school year the Michigan Merit Examination to pupils in grade 11 and to pupils in grade 12 who did not take the complete Michigan Merit Examination in grade 11, is temporarily suspended for the remainder of the 2019–20 school year. Pupils currently in grade 11 will be administered the Scholastic Aptitude Test portion of the Michigan Merit Examination during the school day in the fall of the 2020–21 school year as permitted by the College Board, with results from this test being used for college entrance purposes but not for school accountability purposes.

3.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 503(6)(a), 523(2)(a), 553(5)(a), and 1311e(5)(a) of the School Code, MCL 380.503(6)(a), 380.523(2)(a), 380.553(5)(a), and 380.1311e(5)(a), and under section 104c of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1704c, is temporarily suspended so as to suspend for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year the obligation of a district to administer the state assessments described in those sections, including the Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress (“M-STEP”), or an alternative to M-STEP such as the MI-ACCESS assessment, or other assessment taken in conjunction with the M-STEP, including the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (“PSAT”) developed by the College Board. Pupils otherwise scheduled to be administered the PSAT during the school day in the 2019–2020 school year will be administered the PSAT during the school day in the fall of the 2020–2021 school year as permitted by the College Board.

4.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 41 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1641, is temporarily suspended so as to suspend for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year the obligation of a district to administer to English language learners the English language proficiency assessment known as the “WIDA ACCESS for English language learners” or the “WIDA Alternative ACCESS.”

5.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1279g of the School Code, MCL 380.1279g, is temporarily suspended so as to suspend for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year the obligation of a district, imposed by the Department or otherwise, to administer an assessment that assesses a pupil’s ability to apply reading and mathematics skills in a manner that is intended to allow employers to use the results in making employment decisions, including the WorkKeys assessment.

6.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 104 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1704, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to suspend any requirement for a district to administer the Maryland-Ohio observational tool during the 2019–2020 school year, which is also referred to as the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment.

7.   Pupils enrolled in advanced placement courses and eligible to take examinations for advanced placement courses administered by the College Board must be permitted to take the examinations using the at-home testing option provided by the College Board. Districts shall facilitate, to the extent feasible, access to information relating to advanced placement courses and course schedules provided online by the College Board. For pupils without access to the internet or a device necessary to access the internet, districts shall facilitate, to the extent feasible, access to information regarding assistance provided by the College Board in completing examination requirements. Information relating to advanced placement courses and examinations is available at: apstudents.collegeboard.org/coronavirus-updates.

8.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1249, 1249a, 1249b, and 1250(1) of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, 380.1249a, 380.1249b, and 380.1250(1), under section 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.93, and under section 104 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1704, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to waive any requirement for assessments or other performance evaluations of teachers not on an individual development plan on March 13, 2020 and district administrators during the 2019–2020 school year.

9.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under subsections (1), (3) and (4) of section 1250 of the School Code, MCL 380.1250(1), (3) and (4), is temporarily suspended for the remainder of the 2019–20 school year.

  1. Any teacher who has an individualized development plan, pursuant to section 38.83a or section 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a, 38.93, shall be provided an annual year-end performance evaluation by the employing school district.
    1. Except as provided in section IV.12 of this order, a teacher’s annual year-end performance evaluation shall be determined based on the teacher’s performance at least through March 13, 2020, consistent with section 1249 of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, and sections 38.83a and 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a and 38.93, as affected by this and other orders.
    2. Except as provided in section IV.12 of this order, a teacher’s annual year-end performance evaluation may account for the teacher’s performance after March 13, 2020 through the end of the 2019–2020 school year, consistent with section 1249 of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, and sections 38.83a and 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a and 38.93, as affected by this and other orders, including efforts made by the teacher to prepare and provide remote student instruction given the limitations resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and accompanying response efforts.
  2. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93, and section 1249 of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, is temporarily suspended such that annual year-end performance evaluations under section IV.10 of this order shall give no consideration to criteria requiring data or other information unavailable because a school district, student, teacher, or administrator acts in conformance with this executive order or other orders or response efforts prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster.
  3. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93, and under section 1249 of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to allow a teacher rated as highly effective or effective on their annual year-end performance evaluation for the 2019–2020 school year under sections IV.10 and IV.11 of this order to accrue time toward completing the teacher’s probationary period under Article II, sections 38.81 through 38.84, of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.81 through MCL 38.84.
  4. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.83a, 38.83b, and 38.93, and under section 1249 of the School Code, MCL 380.1249, is temporarily suspended so as to allow a teacher rated as highly effective or effective on their annual year-end performance evaluation for the 2019–2020 school year under sections IV.10 and IV.11 of this order to maintain continuing tenure under Article III, sections 38.91 through 38.93, of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.91 through MCL 38.93.
  5. Strict compliance with the rules and procedures under section 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.93, is temporarily suspended as follows:
    1. Time periods specified for a teacher on continuing tenure to make progress toward individual development plan goals, as required by section 38.93 of the Teachers’ Tenure Act, MCL 38.93, may be extended to allow the teacher sufficient time to make progress toward goals based on criteria requiring data or other information unavailable because a school district, student, teacher, or administrator acts in conformance with this executive order or other orders or response efforts prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster.
    2. An individual development plan goal based on criteria requiring data or other information that is unavailable because of the COVID-19 crisis, including but not limited to a school district, student, teacher, or administrator acting in conformance with this executive order or other orders or response efforts prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster, may be waived.
  6. Nothing in this order prohibits an employing school district from completing an annual year-end performance evaluation for the 2019–2020 school year for a teacher on continuing tenure who has not been provided with an individualized development plan. Should the district complete an annual year-end performance evaluation for the 2019–2020 school year for a teacher on continuing tenure who has not been provided with an individualized development plan, the district shall comply with sections IV.10 and IV.11 of this order.

V.        Pupils in grade 12

1.   A district shall implement a process to issue grades to pupils in grade 12, award credits needed for graduation, provide for completion of the Michigan Merit Curriculum, issue diplomas to pupils in grade 12, and reflect continued learning by pupils in grade 12 pursuant to this order. When implementing this section, a district may, without limitation, use one or more of the following options:

(a)  Award credits and grades for courses taken based on coursework through March 11, 2020.

(b)  Provide an optional final exam or other culminating activity to test pupil understanding of the subject matter of a course to the extent practicable.

(c)  Implement a process for pupils in grade 12 to be certified as eligible to graduate using a prior learning assessment, a portfolio, or a resume approach.

(d)  Offer an interdisciplinary culminating activity that encompasses essential standards missed by pupils due to the closure of schools.

2.   Districts must provide a pupil in grade 12 who was failing a course as of March 11, 2020 an opportunity to the extent feasible to demonstrate learning in the subject matter of the course and receive credit for the course, as determined by the district.

3.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1166(2) of the School Code, MCL 380.1166(2), is temporarily suspended for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year so as to suspend the restriction on a high school from issuing a diploma to a pupil who has not completed a one-semester course of study of five periods per week in civics.

4.   If before March 11, 2020, a district was providing a nonessential elective course to a nonpublic school pupil or homeschool pupil in grade 12 at either a district, intermediate district, or nonpublic school site pursuant to section 166b of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1766b, and that course is required for the pupil to graduate and receive a diploma, the district must, to the extent feasible, continue to offer the nonessential elective course to the pupil through alternative modes of instruction for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year.

VI.       Special education

1.   Districts shall strive in good faith and to the extent practicable, based upon existing resources, technology, training, and curriculum, as well as the circumstances presented by any state of emergency or state of disaster, to provide equal access to alternative modes of instruction to students with disabilities for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year from birth through age 26. This includes the provision of auxiliary services under section 1296 of the School Code, MCL 380.1296.

2.   While either the COVID-19 states of emergency or disaster, or both, continue, districts shall comply with guidance from the United States Department of Education (“USDOE”), including its Office of Civil Rights and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, and the Department concerning the delivery of alternative modes of instruction to students with disabilities in light of the impact of COVID-19.

3.   Districts shall, to the extent practicable and necessary, make individualized determinations whether and to what extent compensatory services may be needed for pupils after the school closure period prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster ends.

4.   A district or a nonpublic school that has been allocated federal funds for the 2019–2020 school year for the purpose of providing special education services shall not be penalized or required to repay the funds by this state due to the inability to provide those services in person during the 2019–2020 school year after March 11, 2020.

5.   Within five days of the effective date of this order, the Department and the Department of Civil Rights are strongly encouraged to submit requests for interpretation, guidance on implementation, flexibility, or waivers to USDOE that would permit districts and nonpublic schools to do one or more of the following during the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year:

(a)  Deliver instruction to all pupils, including students with disabilities, without having to reconvene or amend individualized education plans (“IEPs”) or Section 504 plans.

(b)  Deliver direct and consultative related services such as therapies, including occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech language pathologist, social service worker, teacher consultant, and other special education services and supports, without having to reconvene or amend IEPs or Section 504 plans.

(c)  Complete IEPs and Section 504 plans online, either by telephone conference or video conference, if the parents or guardians involved have access to the technology and agree to the alternative means of participation. If a parent or guardian elects not to participate in an otherwise due IEP online, a district should be permitted to extend the deadline for completion of the IEP for up to 30 school days after the school closure period prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster ends.

(d)  Complete annual or otherwise due IEPs online, either by telephone conference or video conference, with those IEPs being considered timely if they are completed by the end of the 2019–2020 school year.

(e)  Consider whether a pupil should be provided compensatory education for pupils after the school closure period prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster ends, based on applicable law and guidance, no later than the first annual IEP meeting of the 2020–2021 school year.

(f)   Consider compensatory education for pupils who are more likely to qualify for compensatory education through IEP amendments, with the authority to complete those IEP amendments online, either by telephone conference, virtual meetings, or other existing technology.

(g)  Other requests the Department deems necessary to facilitate the delivery of alternative modes of instruction with equal access.

6.   This order does not require that an IEP be amended.

VII.     Temporary suspension of certain requirements relating to the suspension of administrative rules by the Superintendent

1.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1281(3) of the School Code, MCL 380.1281(3), is temporarily suspended so as to suspend for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year the requirement that a district, university school, or intermediate district apply for a limited time waiver from a Department rule interpreting or implementing a provision of the School Code and so as permit the Superintendent to temporarily suspend a Department rule interpreting or implementing a provision of the Code to facilitate the implementation of this order or other orders or response efforts prompted by the COVID-19 state of emergency and/or state of disaster.

2.   The Superintendent may not grant a waiver from the duty to comply with a provision of the School Code and may not grant a waiver from the duty to comply with another state statute unless and to the extent that a waiver is specifically allowed by that other state statute.

VIII.   Temporary suspension of certain certification and continuing learning requirements

1.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1531(2) of the School Code, MCL 380.1531(2), is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Superintendent to issue a temporary one-year teaching certificate to an otherwise qualified individual who is unable to take an appropriate subject area examination required by MCL 380.1531(2) due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

2.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1531(3) of the School Code, MCL 380.1531(3), is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Superintendent to issue a temporary one-year teaching certificate to an individual holding a teaching certificate from another state or a teaching degree from an out-of-state teacher preparation institution who applies for a Michigan teaching certificate, is otherwise qualified, but is unable to take an appropriate subject area examination required by MCL 380.1531(3) because the examination is not offered due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

3.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1531d of the School Code, MCL 380.1531d, is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Superintendent to temporarily waive the requirement that a person seeking a teaching certificate successfully complete a course approved by the Department in first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation and instruction approved by the Department in foreign body airway obstruction management when the person is unable to complete the course and/or the instruction because the course and/or the instruction is not offered due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

4.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1531i(2)(c) of the School Code, MCL 380.1531i(2)(c), is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Superintendent to issue an interim teaching certificate to an otherwise qualified individual who is unable to take an appropriate subject area examination required by MCL 380.1531i(2)(c) because the examination is not offered due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

5.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under Rule 390.1130(6) and (7) of the Michigan Administrative Code is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Superintendent to extend the duration of a 1-year temporary teacher employment authorization by an additional year if the holder of the 1-year temporary teacher employment authorization is unable to complete the requirements to obtain a Michigan teaching certificate because the requirements cannot be satisfied due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

6.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1526 of the School Code, MCL 380.1526, is temporarily suspended so as to waive for any teacher within his or her third year of employment the requirement that the teacher receive at least 15 days of professional development within the teacher’s first three years of employment if the requirement could not be completed due to COVID-19 or accompanying response efforts.

7.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1527(1) of the School Code, MCL 380.1527(1), is temporarily suspended so as to waive the requirement for the 2019–2020 school year that a district or intermediate district provide at least five days of teacher professional development each year.

8.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1233(6) of the School Code, MCL 380.1233(6), is temporarily suspended so as to permit the Department to renew an individual’s school counselor credential regardless of whether the individual has completed at least 25 hours of professional development approved by the Department under MCL 380.1233(8) covering counseling about the college preparation and selection process and at least 25 hours of professional development approved by the Department under MCL 380.1233(8) covering career counseling.

  1. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under Rules 1137(1)(c), 1138(3), 1142(2)(d)(i), and 1142(3)(d) of the Teacher Certification Code, Mich. Admin. Code R 390.1137(1)(c), 1138(3), 1142(2)(d)(i), and 1142(3)(d), is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to permit the Department to renew an individual’s teaching certificate or permit between now and the end of the individual’s certificate or period permit regardless of whether the individual has received an annual year-end evaluation for the 2019–2020 school year.

IX.       Implementation

1.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 21f of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1621f, is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to permit a district pursuant to an approved CoL Plan to enroll a pupil in more than two virtual courses, regardless of whether the virtual course is published in a catalog of courses or a parent or guardian approves, and so as to suspend any requirement to comply with minimum requirements to count a pupil in membership established by the pupil accounting manual.

2.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1278a(4) of the School Code, MCL 380.1278a(4), is temporarily suspended to the extent necessary to permit a district to determine a pupil has completed a credit without using subject area content expectations or guidelines developed by the Department.

3.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under section 1280f(5) of the School Code, MCL 380.1280f(5), is temporarily suspended so as to relieve a district of the obligations imposed by that provision for the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year, including the obligation to retain a pupil in grade 3.

4.   Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 162 and 163 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1762 and 388.1763, is temporarily suspended so as to prevent the forfeiture of funds resulting from the implementation of this order.

5.   To mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on educational outcomes, a district may adopt year-round school or a year-round program for the 2020–2021 school year or start the 2020–2021 school year before the first Monday in September. Strict compliance with rules and procedures under sections 1284a and 1284b of the School Code, MCL 380 1284a and 380.1284b, is temporarily suspended so as to permit a district to adopt year-round school, a year-round program, or an early start for the 2020–2021 school year. Adoption of measures provided in this section may be included by a district as part of the district’s CoL Plan.

6.   Mandatory closure of schools relating to COVID-19 shall not affect an employer contribution, employee contribution, or the accrual of service credit under the Public School Employees Retirement Act of 1979, 1980 PA 300, as amended, MCL 38.1301 to 38.1467.

7.   For a district with a collective bargaining agreement, this order must be implemented by the district in a manner consistent with the collective bargaining agreement.

8.   Before the Department, the Superintendent, or the Department of Civil Rights seeks any guidance, issues a waiver, seeks a waiver relating to this order, or suspends an administrative rule pursuant to this order, the Superintendent or the director of the Department of Civil Rights, as applicable, shall provide the governor in writing with a copy of the request or waiver and information relating to the request, waiver, or suspension, as required by section 8 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.

9.   To ensure management of district and intermediate district affairs and property in ways that will assist the response to the COVID-19 states of emergency and disaster, districts and intermediate districts are authorized and encouraged to donate medical personal protective equipment and supplies to healthcare providers and other necessary personnel engaged in response efforts to COVID-19.

10. This order is effective immediately and continues through the end of the states of emergency and disaster declared in Executive Order 2020-33 or any other state of emergency or disaster declared in response to COVID-19 during the remainder of the 2019–2020 school year, with the exception of the provisions of this order relating to scheduling for the 2020–2021 school year, which will continue into the 2020–2021 school year for that purpose.

11. Executive Order 2020-35 is rescinded.

X.        Definitions

As used in this order:

1.   “Alternative modes of instruction” means modes of pupil instruction, other than in-person instruction, that may include, without limitation, partnerships with other districts or intermediate districts or community colleges or institutions of higher education, use of vendors, use of online learning, telephone communications, email, virtual instruction, videos, slideshows, project-based learning, use of instructional packets, or a hybrid of multiple modes of learning that still promote recommended practices for social distancing to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

2.   “Center” means the Center for Educational Performance and Information referenced in section 94a of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1694a.

3.   “District” means a school district established under the School Code or a public school academy. District does not include an intermediate district, except for an intermediate district that educates K–12 students.

4.   “Intermediate district” means an intermediate school district established under part 7 of the School Code, MCL 380.601 to 380.705b.

5.   “Intermediate superintendent” means the superintendent of an intermediate district.

6.   “Membership” means that term as defined in section 6(4) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1606(4).

7.   “Michigan Virtual School” means the Michigan Virtual School referenced in section 98 of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1698.

8.   “Public school academy” means that term as defined in section 5 of the School Code, MCL 380.5.

9.   “Pupil” means that term as defined in section 6(6) of the School Aid Act, MCL 388.1606(6).

10. “Superintendent of Public Instruction” or “Superintendent” means the superintendent of public instruction described in section 3 of article 8 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.

Governor Whitmer Appoints Educators, Parents, Students to COVID-19 Return to School Advisory Council  

LANSING, Mich. – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced a group of 25 leaders in health care and education to serve on the COVID-19 return to learn advisory council. The group of experts includes educators, parents, and students who will work closely with the governor as she continues to put the health and safety of our students and educators first.

“This group brings together experts in health care and education, including students, educators, and parents to think about how to ensure the more than 1.5 million K-12 students across Michigan get the education they need and deserve,” Governor Whitmer said. “On behalf of our kids, their families, and the more than 100,000 educators in our state, we must all work together to get this right. I know this group is prepared to carefully examine the data and consult with experts when helping me determine what is best for our kids.”

On May 15, 2020, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order No. 2020-88 creating the COVID-19 Return to School Advisory Council. The Advisory Council was created to identify the critical issues that must be addressed, provide valuable input to inform the process of returning to school, and to ensure a smooth and safe transition back to school. The Council will act in an advisory capacity to the Governor and the COVID-19 Task Force on Education, and will develop and submit recommendations to the COVID-19 Task Force on Education regarding the safe, equitable, and efficient K-12 return to school in the Fall.

“Our number one goal on this advisory council is to follow the facts and data to ensure the protection of our students and educators,” said Tonya Allen, President and CEO of the Skillman Foundation and Chair of the Return to Learn Advisory Council. “We are proud to serve as an advisory body to Governor Whitmer as she continues working hard on behalf of Michigan families everywhere. This is a crisis unlike any we’ve seen before, and we are committed working closely together to ensure we get this right.”

The Return to Learn Advisory Council will recommend actions to remove statutory and administrative barriers to delivering education before Phase 6 of the MI Safe Start Plan and help develop and improve systems for academic support for students who experienced learning loss during the Spring/Summer 2020. The Council must report regularly to the COVID-19 Task Force on Education on its activities and make recommendations on an ongoing basis.

The Advisory Council will also include four participating members of the Michigan Legislature: Senators Wayne Schmidt and Dayna Polehanki and Representatives Aaron Miller and Sheryl Kennedy.

The Advisory Council will also include a public health workgroup that will be chaired by Denise Fair, the chief public health officer for the City of Detroit. She holds a Master of Public Health in Health Policy and Management from the University of California-Berkeley and a Master of Business Administration from Wayne State University.

The governor announced the following appointments to the COVID-19 Return to School Advisory Council:

Tonya Allen, of Franklin, is the president and CEO of The Skillman Foundation, and will serve as chair of the Return to Learn Advisory Council. She holds a Master of Public Health and a Master of Social Work from the University of Michigan. Ms. Allen is appointed to represent community members for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020. The Governor has designated Ms. Allen to serve as Chair of the Advisory Council.

Angela M. Blood Starr, of Kalamazoo, is the regional school health coordinator for the Calhoun Intermediate School District. She holds a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University. Ms. Blood Starr is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Nicole Britten, of Saint Joseph, is the health officer for the Berrien County Health Department. She holds a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases from Yale University. Mrs. Britten is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in public health for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Johanna L. Clark, of Frankenmuth, is the principal of Frankenmuth High School. She holds a Master of Education in Leadership and Master of Arts in Secondary Education from Saginaw Valley State University. Mrs. Clark is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Mary R. Gebara, of Okemos, is a trustee with the Okemos Public Schools Board of Education and chairperson of staff outreach for the Okemos Education Foundation. She holds a Master of Arts in Child Development from Michigan State University. Ms. Gebara is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Dominic A. Gonzales, of Lincoln Park, is a student in the Detroit Public Schools Community District. Mr. Gonzales is appointed to represent students for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

David Hecker, Ph.D., of Huntington Woods, is the president of AFT Michigan. He holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Relations from University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Hecker is appointed to represent community members for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Paula J. Herbart, of Lansing, is the president of the Michigan Education Association. She holds a Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan. Ms. Herbart is appointed to represent community members for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Melissa Isaac, of Mount Pleasant, is the director of education for the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan. She holds a Master of Science in Administration from Central Michigan University. Ms. Isaac is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Elizabeth S. Koschmann, Ph.D., of Ann Arbor, is a licensed psychologist and an assistant research scientist in psychiatry at the University of Michigan. She holds a Ph.D. in School Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Koschmann is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in mental health for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Stephen McNew, Ed.D., of Monroe, is the superintendent of the Monroe County Intermediate School District. He holds a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from The University of Toledo. Dr. McNew is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Vic Michaels, of Detroit, is the assistant superintendent of student services and athletics for the Archdiocese of Detroit Catholic Schools and director of the Catholic High School League. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of Detroit. Mr. Michaels is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Justin S. Michalak, of Grosse Pointe Woods, is the assistant superintendent for special education for the Macomb Intermediate School District. He holds a Master of Education from Saginaw Valley State University. Mr. Michalak is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Nicholas J. Paradiso, III, of Grand Rapids, is the vice president of government relations for National Heritage Academies. He holds a Master of Public Administration from the University at Albany. Mr. Paradiso is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Lisa M. Peacock, of Traverse City, is the health officer for the Health Department of Northwest Michigan. She holds a Master of Science in Nursing from Grand Valley State University. Ms. Peacock is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in public health for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Kevin Polston, of Grand Haven, is the superintendent of Godfrey-Lee Public Schools. He holds a Master of Education and a Specialist in Education from Grand Valley State University. Mr. Polston is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Gwendolyn R. Reyes, M.D., of Grand Blanc, is the assistant clinic director at the Hurley Children’s Clinic, director of the pediatric residency program at the Hurley Children’s Hospital, medical director for the Flint Community Schools Wellness Program, and a clinical assistant professor in the Michigan State University Department of Pediatrics and Human Development. She earned her Doctor of Medicine from Michigan State University. Dr. Reyes is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in pediatrics for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Robert Shaner, Ph.D., of Shelby Township, is the superintendent of Rochester Community Schools. He holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Oakland University. Dr. Shaner is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Anupam Chugh Sidhu, of Canton, is the instructional technology manager for Wayne RESA and president of the Plymouth-Canton School Board. She holds a Master of Education in Instructional Technology from Wayne State University. Ms. Sidhu is appointed to represent parents for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Travis Smith, Ed.D., of Marquette, is an elementary school principal in Marquette Area Public Schools. He holds a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from Central Michigan University. Dr. Smith is appointed to represent school leaders for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Joshua J. Smith, of Jackson, is a school counselor for Western School District in Parma, a lead facilitator for the Michigan College Access Network, and a counselor at A Healing Place. He holds a Master of Arts in Counseling from Spring Arbor University. Mr. Smith is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in mental health for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Stephanie M. Sutton, of Commerce Township, is a central clinical infection preventionist for the Beaumont Health System. She holds a Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan. Ms. Sutton is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in epidemiology for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Gregory Talberg, of Williamston, is a teacher with Howell Public Schools. He holds a Master of Educational K-12 Administration from Michigan State University and a Master of Education in Social Studies Education from the University of Florida. Mr. Talberg is appointed to represent educators for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Ridgway H. White, of Fenton, is the president and CEO of the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Hobart College. Mr. White is appointed to represent community members for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Kymberli A. Wregglesworth, of Onaway, is a teacher with Onaway Area Community Schools. She holds a Master of Arts in Education from Michigan State University and a Master of Arts in American History and Government from Ashland University. Ms. Wregglesworth is appointed to represent educators for a term commencing June 3, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2020.

Governor Whitmer Announces Process to Chart Path for the Safe and Equitable Reopening of Schools

Whitmer signs Executive Order to create a Return to Learn Advisory Council

LANSING, Mich. — Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced the creation of the Return to Learning Advisory Council via Executive Order 2020-88, formalizing a process for determining how schools may be able to reopen in the fall. The panel – which will be comprised of students, parents, frontline educators, administrators and public health officials – will be tasked with providing the COVID-19 Task Force on Education within the State Emergency Operations Center with recommendations on how to safely, equitably, and efficiently return to school in the Fall. The State of Michigan will also partner with a national nonprofit organization called Opportunity Labs to bring national expertise to this project.

“It’s critical we bring together experts in health care and education, as well as students, educators, and families to think about how and if it’s possible to safely return to in-person learning in the fall and how to ensure the more than 1.5 million K-12 students across Michigan get the education they need and deserve,” Governor Whitmer said. “This panel will use a data-informed and science-based approach with input from epidemiologists to determine if, when, and how students can return to school this fall and what that will look like.”

On March 3, Governor Whitmer established the COVID-19 Task Force on Education which includes key state government agencies, including representatives from MDHHS, MDE, and others. Since then, she has worked around the clock with experts in health care and education to protect our students, educators, and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor closed school buildings to students on March 16, and on April 30, she announced that buildings would remain closed for the duration of the school year. The original Task Force is tasked with recommending a roadmap and framework for school to utilize to plan for various public health scenarios.

Going forward, the Task Force will be informed by the Return to School Advisory Council, including voices from educators, health experts, and other community stakeholders. The Advisory Council will gather critical stakeholder feedback on the content of the Roadmap.

The Advisory Council will provide the COVID-19 Task Force on education with recommendations on how to safely, equitably and efficiently return to school in the fall and assemble critical voices from education, public health and communities across the state to identify the key issues schools must consider before opening, including:

  • Performing outreach to ensure the voices of stakeholders are included in the discussion of implementing the 2020-2021 school year in these challenging and uncharted circumstances.
  • Ensuring experts in public health and epidemiology are informing the discussion of safety returning to school.
  • Recommending actions to remove statutory/administrative barriers to delivering education before we are at Phase 6 of the MI Safe Start Plan.
  • Recommending actions to develop and improve systems for remedial support for students who experienced learning loss during the spring and summer.

Dr. Mario Ramirez, Managing Director of Opportunity Labs, a practicing emergency physician and former Acting Director of Pandemic and Emerging Threats the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services during the Ebola epidemic said, "we look forward to supporting the Advisory Council in its work to ensure the safest possible return to school in the fall." 

Support for this project is generously being provided but the Council of Michigan Foundations, the C.S. Mott Foundation, and other philanthropic organizations.

“I want to thank all of the parents who have been burning the candle at both ends these last few months trying to help their kids stay on track with their schoolwork while juggling their other responsibilities during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. I know it hasn’t been easy,” Governor Whitmer said. “My hope is that by organizing a formal process informed by public health experts, we can give school districts much-needed direction heading into the 2020-2021 school year.”

The panel will be made up of more than 20 members representing K-12 administrators and educators, health experts and community stakeholders

Anyone interested can apply for the Return to Learn Advisory Council by going to Michigan.gov/appointments and click ‘apply now’ under boards and commissions. You will be able to choose Return to School Advisory Council under the appointment information tab within the application. Applications are due by Wednesday, May 20.

Governor Whitmer Extends Stay Home, Stay Safe Order, Reopens Manufacturing as Part of her MI Safe Start Plan 

Michigan’s Big 3 Auto Manufacturers Can Return to Work on May 11th 

 

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-77 to extend Michigan’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order to May 28. The governor’s order will allow manufacturing workers, including those at Michigan’s Big 3 auto companies, to resume work on Monday, May 11 as part of her MI Safe Start Plan.  

 

“This is good news for our state, our businesses, and our working families,” said Governor Whitmer. “We’re not out of the woods yet, but this is an important step forward on our MI Safe Start plan to re-engage our economy safely and responsibly. As we continue to phase in sectors of our economy, I will keep working around the clock to ensure our businesses adopt best practices to protect workers from the spread of COVID-19. When we all keep doing our part, we can reduce the risk of a second wave and re-engage our economy safely and responsibly.” 

 

Under Executive Order 2020-77, manufacturing facilities must adopt measures to protect their workers from the spread of COVID-19. That includes conducting a daily entry screening protocol for workers and everyone else entering the facility, including a questionnaire covering symptoms and exposure to people with possible COVID-19, together with a temperature screening as soon as no-touch thermometers can be obtained. They must also create dedicated entry points at every facility, and suspend entry of all non-essential in-person visits, including tours. 

 

“Governor Whitmer has brought together leaders in business and labor to ensure our workers can return to the job safely. The safety of our workers is our top priority and I am confident that Michigan manufacturers are prepared to deliver on the worker protections included in today's order,” said John Walsh, President and CEO of the Michigan Manufacturers Association. “We believe the manufacturing industry has a big role to play in Michigan's economic recovery and we're ready to lead the way. I look forward to continuing to work closely with the governor to bring the manufacturing industry back up to full strength.” 

 

Manufacturing facilities must also train workers on, among other things, how COVID-19 is transmitted from person to person, signs and symptoms of COVID-19, steps workers must take to notify the business or operation of signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or suspected or confirmed diagnosis, and the use of personal protective equipment. 

 

All businesses in the state—including manufacturers—must require masks to be worn when workers cannot consistently maintain six feet of separation from others, and consider face shields for those who cannot consistently maintain three feet of separation from other workers. 

 

“MICHauto and the Detroit Regional Chamber applaud the Governor for her continued steps to safely re-open our economy. Automotive and manufacturing is not only the backbone of our regional and state economy, it is essential to the functioning of the global supply chain. This is good news for Michigan and the nation,” said Glenn Stevens Jr., executive director of MICHauto, and vice president of Automotive and Mobility Initiatives for the Chamber. 

 

“We have supported Governor Whitmer’s approach to keeping families, communities and companies safe since the beginning of this pandemic,” said Andi Owen, President and CEO of Herman Miller. “Our manufacturing teams are at the heart of our company. Working within the governor’s guidelines will help to ensure we maintain the safest environment for our employees, both as they come to work and return home to their families.” 

 

The governor’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order remains in effect until May 28, 2020. Under this order, Michiganders still must not leave their homes except to run critical errands, to engage in safe outdoor activities, or to go to specified jobs. 

 

Governor Whitmer Details Six Phases of Her MI Safe Start Plan  

Governor Announces Michigan is in Phase Three 

 

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, after announcing that Michigan’s manufacturing workers will return to work on Monday, May 11, Governor Gretchen Whitmer detailed the six phases of her MI Safe Start Plan to re-engage Michigan’s economy. The governor has worked with leaders in health care, business, labor, and education to develop the plan, and announced today that Michigan is in phase three. 

 

The phases of the pandemic include:

1) UNCONTROLLED GROWTH: The increasing number of new cases every day, overwhelming our health systems. 

2) PERSISTENT SPREAD: We continue to see high case levels with concern about health system capacity. 

3) FLATTENING: The epidemic is no longer increasing and the health-system's capacity is sufficient for current needs. 

4) IMPROVING: Cases, hospitalizations and deaths are clearly declining. 

5) CONTAINING: Continued case and death rate improvements, with outbreaks quickly contained. 

6) POST-PANDEMIC: Community spread not expected to return. 

“I am working closely with health care experts and epidemiologists to closely monitor Michigan’s progress in the fight against COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “As we move forward with the MI Safe Start Plan, I am working closely with partners in business, labor, and education to determine the best way to move forward each day. All of us know the importance of getting people back to work and the economy moving again. We’ve already reopened lower-risk sectors like construction, manufacturing, and lawn care.  

 

“The worst thing we can do is open up in a way that causes a second wave of infections and death, puts health care workers at further risk, and wipes out all the progress we've made. That's why we will continue to monitor the spread of this virus, hospital capacity, testing rates, and more as we work toward reaching the ‘improving’ phase.” 

 

Governor Whitmer Extends Stay Home, Stay Safe Order, Directs Michiganders to Wear Homemade Masks in Enclosed Public Spaces 

Governor’s Executive Order Lifts Restrictions on Activities like Lawn Care, Golfing, Boating 

  

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-59, extending her “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through May 15. The new order will require people to wear homemade face coverings when they enter enclosed public spaces. It will also lift some restrictions on outdoor activities and allow some workers who perform previously suspended activities to go back to work. 

 

“Data shows that most Michiganders are doing their part by staying home and staying safe. That’s good, but we must keep it up. Social distancing is our best weapon to defeat this enemy,” said Governor Whitmer. “With new COVID-19 cases leveling off, however, we are lifting some of the restrictions put in place in the previous order. I want to be crystal clear: the overarching message today is still the same. We must all do our part by staying home and staying safe as much as possible.” 

 

“The numbers we’ve seen in the past week have shown a plateau in positive cases, but Michiganders must continue doing their part to fight this virus and protect their families,” said MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “The governor has taken a number of critical steps to protect Michigan families, and this order today will allow that work to continue. We will keep monitoring the data closely and work with our partners across state government to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.” 

 

The order will require people to wear homemade, non-medical grade face coverings when they enter enclosed public spaces. It will also require employers to provide at least cloth face coverings to their employees. People won’t have to wear face coverings when they’re taking a walk in the neighborhood, but when they go to the grocery store, they should be wearing one. Under the order, however, no one will be subject to criminal penalty for going without a mask. 

 

The new executive order will also allow some workers who perform very previously suspended activities to go back on the job. Landscapers, lawn-service companies, and nurseries can return to work, subject to strict social distancing. Retailers to that do not sell necessary supplies may reopen for curbside pick-up and for delivery. Big box stores can reopen “closed areas,” like garden centers. And bike repair and maintenance can come back online. 

 

At the same time, the order will ease up on some restrictions on members of the public. It will, for example, allow motorized boating and golf (but no golf carts), consistent with sound social distancing. It will also permit individuals to travel between their residences, though such travel during the epidemic is strongly discouraged. And it will clarify that state parks remain open, as they have been throughout the emergency. 

 

The governor’s actions today are in close alignment with other Midwest states. On April 16, Governor Whitmer announced that she and Governors Mike DeWine (OH), Tony Evers (WI), Tim Walz (MN), JB Pritzker (IL), Eric Holcomb (IN), and Andy Beshear (KY) will work in close coordination to reopen the economy in the Midwest region. The governor is committed to continuing to work closely with other governors to protect families and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. 

Governor Whitmer and Headspace Launch 'Stay Home, Stay MIndful’ website to Offer Free Mental Health Resources During COVID-19 Pandemic  

The website offers meditation and mindfulness content curated for Michiganders at no cost  

 

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the Stay Home, Stay MIndful website in partnership with Headspace, a global leader in mindfulness and meditation, and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to provide a new mental health resource for Michiganders to access for free during the COVID-19 pandemic facing both the state and nation.  

 

Starting today, Michiganders across the state can access a specially-curated collection of science-backed, evidence-based guided meditations, along with at-home workouts that guide people through mindful exercises, sleep and kids content to help address rising stress and anxiety. Available at www.headspace.com/MI an internet connection is the only thing that is needed to access these tools to while you stay home and stay safe. 

 

“Michiganders have faced an unprecedented crisis over the past month, and in these uncertain times having access to mental health resources is crucial,” said Gov. Whitmer. “That is why I am proud to partner with Headspace, I know this science-based resource will be valuable during this challenging time. This virus has taken a toll on Michiganders’ physical and mental health. While we all stay home and stay safe, it is so important take the time to check in and take care yourself.  Michiganders are tough, but having access to tools like this one will help us all get through this together.” 

 

In 25 published studies in some of the leading mindfulness peer-reviewed journals, Headspace has been shown to have favorable outcomes of interventions including reduced stressincreased compassionand decreased aggression. Headspace has also worked to make its digital mental health tools more accessible to those who need it most during the COVID-19 pandemic from healthcare providers, educators, caregivers, businesses and people around the world. 

 

“While Michiganders are working together to take the necessary steps to safeguard their physical health and safety, it’s also critical that we protect our mental health,” said Rich Pierson, co-founder and chief executive officer of Headspace.  “We want to be there for the people of Michigan and do our small part in helping them cope with rising levels of stress and anxiety during this public health crisis. That’s why we're humbled to partner with Governor Whitmer on increasing access to mental health resources for folks across the state.” 

 

“We’re delighted to partner with Headspace and offer Michiganders another valuable resource to help them navigate this challenging time,” said Robert Gordon, MDHHS director. “The COVID-19 pandemic poses a threat to not only physical but also mental health, and so it’s important that we do everything we can to support individuals in both areas.”  

 

Today’s announcement follows additional steps MDHHS has taken to provide mental health resources during the COVID-19 pandemic, including the recently launched warmline  that connects Michiganders living with persistent mental health conditions to certified peer support specialists. The warmline operates 10 a.m. to 2 a.m., seven days a week at 888-PEER-753 (888-733-7753). The department has also published several guides in support of the emotional health of older adults, children, health care providers, first responders and others who may have unique needs when processing the impacts of this pandemic. Those can be found on the Resources section of MDHHS coronavirus website. 

Governor Whitmer Extends, Expands “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order to Save Lives 

Governor directs all Michiganders to stay home, stay safe through April 30 

  

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Whitmer signed executive order 2020-42, extending her prior “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through the end of April. As with the prior order, Executive Order 2020-42 limits gatherings and travel and requires all workers who are not necessary to sustain or protect life to stay home. Executive Order 2020-42 also imposes more stringent limitations on stores to reduce foot traffic, slow the spread of the coronavirus, and save lives.

  

“Michigan has the third highest number of COVID-19 cases in the country, and we’re still on the upswing. We must continue to do everything we can to slow the spread and protect our families,” said Governor Whitmer. “Data shows that most Michiganders are doing their part by staying home and staying safe. That’s good, but we must keep it up. When we do, we can save lives and shorten the amount of time we’re working through this crisis, which will be good for our families and good for our economy in the long-run. We can also protect critical infrastructure workers like doctors, nurses, grocery store employees, and child care workers. Now more than ever, it’s crucial that people stay home and stay safe.” 

 

“It’s clear that staying home is the most effective way we can slow the spread of COVID-19 in Michigan,” said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “This aggressive action will help us protect more people and ease the strain on our health care system.” 

 

Executive Order 2020-42 prohibits all businesses and operations from requiring workers to leave their homes, unless those workers are necessary to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations. Businesses and operations are to designate the workers who meet those criteria, and must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons in the performance of that in-person work.  

 

Workers who are necessary to sustain or protect life include those in health care and public health, law enforcement and public safety, grocery store workers, and more. For a full list of these critical infrastructure workers, click the link to Executive Order 2020-42 at the bottom of this page. To enable these critical workers to get to their workplaces, automobile dealerships will now be allowed to open for remote sales, though showrooms must remain closed. 

 

Under the new order, all public and private gatherings among persons outside a single household remain temporarily prohibited. Though Michiganders may leave the house to get groceries or needed supplies, the new order encourages people to limit the number of household members running errands to the maximum extent possible. As before, people may engage in outdoor activities like walking, hiking, running, cycling, kayaking, canoeing, or any other recreational activity, consistent with remaining at least six feet from people from outside a person’s household and with other restrictions imposed by prior executive orders. The order clarifies, however, that travel for vacations or for any other purpose is prohibited. 

 

A new section of the order imposes restrictions on stores in an effort to reduce crowds. Large stores must limit the number of people in the store at one time to no more than 4 customers for every 1,000 square feet of customer floor space; small stores must limit capacity to 25% of the total occupancy limits (including employees) under the fire codes. To regulate entry, stores must establish lines with markings for patrons to enable them to stand at least six feet apart from one another while waiting. Large stores must also close areas of the store that are dedicated to carpeting, flooring, furniture, garden centers, plant nurseries, or paint. 

 

“This doesn’t mean everything will go back to normal on May 1,” Gov. Whitmer continued. “But based on the data we have right now, this is the appropriate window for an extension. It will take time to safely and responsibly re-open the economy, which is why we will continue to provide critical unemployment support and assistance to our small businesses during this challenging time. We will get through this if we all continue to do our part.” 

 

All individuals who leave their home or place of residence must adhere to social distancing measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including remaining at least six feet from people from outside the individual’s household. 

 

Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Protecting Workers Who Handle FOIA Requests

LANSING, Mich. — Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-38, which relaxes requirements for responding to FOIA requests made by mail or fax during the COVID-19 emergency. This action will protect workers who handle FOIA requests by allowing public bodies to defer portions of requests that would require workers to report to work in-person. The Executive Order takes effect immediately and ends at 11:59 p.m. on June 4, 2020.

“During a time of crisis, it’s crucial that Michiganders have access to the information they need to stay safe. My administration is committed to ensuring that while also protecting public health and encouraging social distancing,” Governor Whitmer said. “This Executive Order encourages public bodies to respond to Freedom of Information Act requests in a timely manner and in the safest way possible.”

Under the Executive Order, a public body must respond to a request received at its physical office via U.S. mail or fax within 10 business days after an employee receives and views the request. If a request requires a search of physical records it will be deferred until after the state of emergency and disaster declared in Executive Order 2020-33 is lifted.

The Executive Order also requires public bodies to communicate in writing with the person filing the request if they are unable to fulfill the request without a search of physical public records. The person filing the request then has the option to amend their request to include electronic records only. If a public body is unable to fulfill a request in the timeframe they specified because of remote work and social distancing, then a written notice will be sent to the person filing the request to explain why there is a delay.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus

Dear Families and Staff,


Today, Governor Whitmer signs Executive Order 2020-35 Suspending Face-to-Face Learning at K-12 Schools for the Remainder of the year.

Per the Executive Order, Allen Park Public Schools will be working with Wayne RESA to review our Continuity Learning Plan after our scheduled spring break. 

Until that time, we do not anticipate making any changes to our current learning plans. A Parent Update letter is in the works.

As a reminder, tomorrow begins spring break, we hope your students will be able to take a "break" academically and take care of themselves physically, socially, and emotionally during this difficult time. Please look for announcements regarding our learning plan after April 12.

Be well, stay healthy and safe.

Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Suspending Face-to-Face Learning at K-12 Schools for Remainder of School Year

Executive Order sets guidelines for remote learning, ensures teachers, school employees will be paid for remainder of school year

LANSING, Mich. — Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed Executive Order 2020-35, which orders all K-12 school buildings to close for the remainder of the school year — unless restrictions are lifted — and ensures continuing of learning by setting guidelines for remote learning. District facilities may be used by public school employees and contractors for the purposes of facilitating learning at a distance while also practicing social distancing.

“My number one priority right now is protecting Michigan families from the spread of COVID-19. For the sake of our students, their families, and the more than 100,000 teachers and staff in our state, I have made the difficult decision to close our school facilities for the remainder of the school year,” Governor Whitmer said. “As a parent, I understand the challenge closing schools creates for parents and guardians across the state, which is why we are setting guidelines for schools to continue remote learning and ensuring parents have resources to continue their children’s education from the safety of their homes. There is no video chat or homework packet that can replace the value of a highly trained, experienced teacher working with students in a classroom, but we must continue to provide equitable educational opportunities for students during this public health crisis.”

The Michigan Association of Intermediate School Administrators and the Michigan Council of Charter School Authorizers are currently developing a Continuity of Learning Plan template application for schools to utilize in order to create their localized plan. The application will be made available by April 3. District plans will need to detail how districts will provide opportunities for students to learn remotely and how schools will manage and monitor their progress. It will also provide information on how parents and guardians can learn more about the local plan. Each district must have its plan approved by their regional intermediate school district before being implemented. Public school academies must have their plans approved by their authorizer. Districts can also partner with one another to create joint plans.  

Every district’s plan will be different and will reflect what’s best and feasible for their community. A plan can include learning by any number of modes of instruction delivery, including a hybrid approach. However they are designed, districts must ensure their plans are appropriate, equitable and accessible for students and families.

If the plan relies on some online instruction, the district should ensure every student who needs it has access to an appropriate device with an ability to connect to the internet. Students and families will not be penalized if they are unable to participate in their alternate learning plan.

Schools should continue to provide mental health care services for students, to the extent possible, and should be ready and willing to help efforts to establish disaster relief childcare centers. School districts will also continue to provide meals for families who need them during the COVID-19 crisis. If any schools have unused personal protective equipment, cleaning supplies or other materials, they are allowed and encouraged to donate them to organizations that could put them to use.

School districts will have the flexibility to adopt a balanced calendar for the 2019-2020 school year and/or to begin the 2020-2021 school year before Labor Day without having to seek additional approval. Teachers and school employees will be paid for the remainder of the school year. Student teachers will still be able to get a temporary certification and current teachers will still be able to get their certifications renewed, even if they can’t meet all the requirements due to COVID-19.

All Michigan high school seniors will be given the opportunity to graduate this year so that they may make a successful postsecondary transition. Additionally, all standardized tests previously scheduled for the remainder of the school year, including the M-STEP and the SAT, will be canceled. There will be a date in October for rising high school seniors to take the SAT and for other high school students to take the PSAT.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.

MICHIGAN LAUNCHES COVID-19 VOLUNTEER WEBSITE

Medical professionals, everyday residents asked to save lives

LANSING, MICH. As Michigan’s healthcare system faces tremendous strains due to the spread of COVID-19, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are calling on medical professionals and everyday Michiganders to volunteer their talents and time to save lives.

Today Gov. Whitmer and MDHHS launched a new volunteer website, www.michigan.gov/fightcovid19, where trained medical professionals can register to serve their fellow Michiganders by assisting hospitals in fighting COVID-19. Other state residents also can use the site to find out how they can help in their local communities, give blood, donate money or needed medical supplies, or assist public health officials in tracking infections.

“We’ve seen an incredible amount of strength and courage of Michiganders during this time of uncertainty, whether it’s from communities donating food, money, and resources to those that need it or from businesses using their technology to manufacture personal protective equipment,” said Gov. Whitmer. “To bend the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19 in our state, we must all work together as Michiganders. Whether you’re a medical professional looking to volunteer, or someone who can give blood or donate to your local food bank, everyone can help out. We will get through this together.”

This website will serve as a single clearinghouse for Michiganders to join the fight against COVID-19. The state will work with hospitals and health systems that are short-staffed to fill gaps if and when necessary.

Residents with a background in public health, healthcare fields, or community organizing may assist with contact tracing. Contact tracing involves speaking with COVID-19-positive patients to determine the people they interacted with and locations they visited in the days prior to becoming infected.

“The time is now to save lives,” said MDHHS Director Robert Gordon. “Doctors, nurses, medical assistants – please volunteer where we need you most. You can save lives. Michiganders in good health who want to serve seniors who are alone – safely, from a distance – please volunteer. You can save lives, too. If you’re ready to use your cell phone to trace infections to their source, please volunteer. You can save lives, too. Visit www.michigan.gov/fightcovid19.”

Easy-to-use-buttons on the website allow users to link to volunteer opportunities in their community, donate or give blood. The Michigan Community Service Commission within the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity is a partner in the new website as the state’s expert at using service as a strategy to address Michigan’s most pressing issues and empowering volunteers to strengthen communities.

The American Red Cross is also partnering with the state on the new site. As the demand for blood remains high during the pandemic, Whitmer and the Red Cross encourage eligible, healthy Michigan donors to go to RedCrossBlood.org and schedule an appointment to give in the days and weeks ahead. The Red Cross has implemented COVID-19 mitigation measures at blood drives.

Information around COVID-19 outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.  

President Trump Approves Governor Whitmer’s Request for Major Disaster Declaration 

Declaration Includes Support for Crisis Counseling, Emergency Protective Measures 

Governor Announces Delivery of 112,800 N95 masks from Strategic National Stockpile 

 

LANSING, Mich. -- Last night, President Trump approved Governor Whitmer’s request for a Major Disaster declaration in Michigan. The declaration means that Michigan is now eligible for participation in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) programming to provide relief for Michiganders impacted by the COVID-19 virus and measures to slow the spread of the virus. While Michigan made a broad request for aid in every Individual Assistance and Public Assistance program from the Individual Assistance category, funding was approved for the Crisis Counseling Program and funding for Emergency Protective Measures from the Public Assistance Category was also approved. 

 

“This is a good start, and it will help us protect Michiganders and slow the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Whitmer. “I’m hopeful that the president will review my request for individual assistance programs that would provide meals to families who need them and rental assistance and temporary housing for families. I look forward to the federal government’s continued partnership as we work to fight this virus.” 

 

The Crisis Counseling Program is a direct-support program to provide services for those whose mental health has been impacted by the spread of COVID-19. The federal government also granted the governor’s request for emergency protective measures, including funding for transporting and pre-positioning equipment, Emergency Operation Center (EOC)-related costs, medical supplies and personal protective equipment, medical care and transport, and childcare. The governor’s request for Hazard Mitigation assistance to help provide relief during planning for recovery in the long-term is currently under review. 

 

While the relief package approved by congress on Friday will provide relief in some of the requested areas of individual assistance, including Unemployment Insurance Assistance and Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programming (D-SNAP) under the Stafford Act, FEMA can also provide aid in these areas where they do not overlap with existing programs. Michigan requested assistance for both Disaster Unemployment Assistance and D-SNAP that have not yet been approved.   

 

On Thursday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to the president requesting a major disaster declaration. The programs the governor requested to assist Michiganders during this time include, but are not limited to, the following categories of individual assistance: Disaster Unemployment Assistance, Disaster Crisis Counseling, Disaster Case Management, Individuals and Households Program, Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Disaster Survivor Assistance, Disaster Legal Services, and Voluntary Agency Coordination. If approved, these programs would provide direct assistance to Michiganders through state, tribal, and local partnerships with FEMA other agencies. Disasters hit the most vulnerable first, and the programs were requested to provide relief to the homeless, those looking for legal assistance, the loved ones of individuals lost to COVID-19, those without access to water, and more 

 

The governor also requested critical public assistance programs like Debris Removal, Emergency Protective Measures, Roads and Bridges, Water Control Facilities, Buildings and Equipment, Utilities, and Parks, Recreation, and Other Facilities. The strain on Michigan’s infrastructure during the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic has been great, and assistance is required to continue providing a safe and healthy Michigan for all. 

 

Michigan Receives 112,800 N95 Masks from Strategic National Stockpile 

Also today, Gov. Whitmer announced on Twitter that the State of Michigan received a shipment of 112,800 N95 masks from the strategic national stockpile this morning, with an additional shipment of 8,000 masks on the way. 

 

“This is great news for our front line health care workers,” said Gov. Whitmer. “We’ll keep working hard along with FEMA and the White House to get more of the personal protective equipment we need to keep Michiganders safe.” 

LANSING -- Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's office issued the following statement today from Press Secretary Tiffany Brown on the governor's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order:

"Gov. Whitmer is committed to ensuring that Michigan students have access to the food they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the governor's executive order, K-12 school food services are considered critical infrastructure and should continue. The governor deeply appreciates the vital work that our frontline school employees are doing every day to ensure that our kids have the food they need while the order is in effect."

 

March 23, 2020 

Governor Whitmer Signs “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order 

Governor directs all non-critical businesses to temporarily close, all Michiganders to stay home or six feet away from others during COVID-19 crisis 

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order (EO 2020-21), directing all Michigan businesses and operations to temporarily suspend in-person operations that are not necessary to sustain or protect life. The order also directs Michiganders to stay in their homes unless they’re a part of that critical infrastructure workforce, engaged in an outdoor activity, or performing tasks necessary to the health and safety of themselves or their family, like going to the hospital or grocery store.  

Effective at 12:01 am on March 24, 2020, for at least the next three weeks, individuals may only leave their home or place of residence under very limited circumstances, and they must adhere to social distancing measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when they do so, including remaining at least six feet from people from outside the individual’s household to the extent feasible under the circumstances. 

“In just 13 days, we’ve gone from 0 to over 1,000 COVID-19 cases,” said Governor Whitmer. “This is an unprecedented crisis that requires all of us working together to protect our families and our communities. The most effective way we can slow down the virus is to stay home. I know this will be hard, but it will be temporary. If we all come together, get serious, and do our part by staying home, we can stay safe and save lives.” 

“Taking aggressive action to protect our communities is the most important thing we can do to mitigate further spread of COVID-19,” said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “If we do this now, we can make sure our hospitals and healthcare workers are prepared to take care of the sickest people. It is crucial that people do the right thing by staying home and staying safe.” 

Executive Order 2020-21 prohibits all businesses and operations from requiring workers to leave their homes, unless those workers are necessary to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations. Businesses and operations are to designate the workers that meet those criteria, and must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons in the performance of that necessary in-person work. 

Workers that are necessary to sustain or protect life include those in health care and public health, law enforcement and public safety, grocery store workers, and more. For a full list of these critical infrastructure workers, click the link to Executive Order 2020-21 at the bottom of this page. 

Additionally, under Executive Order 2020-21, all public and private gatherings of any number of people occurring among persons outside a single household are temporarily prohibited. People may leave the house to perform for limited, necessary purposes, and may engage in outdoor activities like walking, hiking, running, cycling, or any other recreational activity, consistent with remaining at least six feet from people from outside a person’s household and with other restrictions imposed by prior executive orders. 

Michigan is currently in the top five states in the nation in number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. Several governors across the country have taken similar steps to protect their communities from the spread of COVID-19, including governors Mike DeWine (R-OH), Andrew Cuomo (D-NY), J.B. Pritzker (D-IL), Tom Wolf (D-PA), Gavin Newsom (D-CA), John Bel Edwards (D-LA), Phil Murphy (D-NJ), and Ned Lamont (D-CT). 

Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:    

  • Fever       
  • Cough       
  • Shortness of breath       

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is:  

  • If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.       
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.         
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.         
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.         
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.         
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.        
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.       

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus   

For those who have questions about the state’s actions to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, please call the COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-535-6136 between 8AM - 5PM daily.   

Michiganders can apply for unemployment benefits if they have left work or taken a leave of absence because of self-isolation or self-quarantine in response to elevated risk from COVID-19 due to being immunocompromised, displaying the symptoms of COVID-19, having contact in the last 14 days with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, the need to care for someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, or a family care responsibility as a result of a government directive. Those temporarily laid off from work should apply for unemployment benefits online at www.michigan.gov/UIA or 1-866-500-0017.  

Governor Whitmer is working to ensure that children who rely on the food provided by schools will have the resources they need. The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has developed an online map for families to find meals. Families can access the map at: https://www.mcgi.state.mi.us/schoolnutrition/. 

On March 19, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved the governor’s request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration, opening the opportunity to small businesses to access low-interest loans from the SBA. The application for disaster loan assistance is available at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/. For businesses looking for more information on how to apply for an SBA EIDL loan or whether it is something they should consider, visit michiganbusiness.org/covid19. 

To view executive order 2020-21, click the link below:   

This press release will be translated and made available in Arabic and Spanish at www.michigan.gov/whitmer  

Allen Park Public Schools COVID-19 School Closings FAQs


When and for how long will schools be closed?

Allen Park Public Schools already agreed-upon calendar has Spring Break scheduled from April 6-10, 2020. As of March 16, 2020, schools will open on April 13, 2020. If this changes, we will notify the community via email, social media and our website.



Will APPS still be having the scheduled spring break during the week of April 6 - April 10, 2020?

Allen Park Public Schools already agreed-upon calendar has Spring Break scheduled from April 6-10, 2020. As of March 16, 2020, schools will open on April 13, 2020. If this changes, we will notify the community via email, social media and our website. At this time, we have not received any guidance from the Michigan Department of Education as it relates to the number of days or hours of instruction the State will require schools to reschedule, and the options made available to schools to do so. We anticipate receiving additional guidance from MDE in the coming days, and hope to answer this question as soon as possible.

 

Will I be able to pick up my child’s belongings from school? 

If students still have personal belongings/band instruments that need to be picked up, please refer to the following schedule:

APMS, APHS, APCS -- Thursday, March 19 from 9:00 am-12:00 pm

Elementary Families needing essential items -- please email your building principal to schedule an appointment on Thursday, March 19 between 9:00 am and 12:00 pm.

There will be no access to buildings after March 19, 2020.

 

Will the buildings be open before April 13?

No. At this time, buildings are not scheduled to be opened or accessible by the general public. The district is taking this time to deep clean and prepare our buildings for use when schools return to regular session. Please check with your building administrator if you have a special request. 

 

Will athletic games and practices continue?

No. At this time, all scheduled games and practices are cancelled. The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) has directed all member schools to suspend activities in all sports for all seasons– effective Monday, March 16 through at least Sunday, April 5 – to fall in line with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s order that all schools close for the next three weeks in order to deter the spread of COVID-19. All athletic activities to be halted include practices, scrimmages and competitions/games, as well as strength training, conditioning and any other organized sessions and activities in all MHSAA in-season and out-of-season sports. Updates will continue to be posted as necessary to the MHSAA Website at https://www.mhsaa.com/coronavirus

 


Will my club or organization that is scheduled to use a school building be allowed to access the building?

 No. At this time, our buildings are not scheduled to be opened or accessible by the general public. The district is taking this time to deep clean and prepare our buildings for use when schools return to regular session.

 

My child is having trouble coping with this pandemic.

 The following resources from the National Association of School Psychologists and the World Health Organization is helpful for parents and caregivers in talking to and supporting children through this time:

  

Will my child need to complete homework or other school required assignments?

 APPS teachers and administrators are providing students and families with resources to support continuation of meaningful learning during school closures, however, we are not suggesting that this replaces instruction. We encourage students to continue their learning through these and other resources, which are not being assigned as homework or otherwise required for grading or assessment. Please look on this page of our website for updates and district communication. 

 

How can I contact my child’s teacher?

During the school closure, teachers will be providing supplemental instruction through Google Classroom. If you have any questions, or need assistance related to the instructional needs of your child, please contact your teacher or building administrator via e-mail.  Since no one is in the offices at the buildings, voicemail messages will not be received. Please use email to communicate any questions or needs. All staff email addresses can be found on the Contact Us tab of the District website.

 

Will M-STEP and SAT testing be suspended?

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) Office of Educational Assessment & Accountability (OEAA) has reported that they are partnering with assessment vendors to provide more flexibility in all our state assessments (M-STEP, MI-Access, SAT, PSAT, WorkKeys, and WIDA) that would allow for their successful completion. School closure due to the public health emergency has created significant concerns about test preparation, test administration, and potential student results. MDE leadership has conveyed these concerns to the U.S. Department of Education and will advocate for maximum flexibility as it relates to state testing. We will continue to monitor and provide you with updated information as it becomes available.

 

How will the school closure affect my third grader and the Third Grade Reading Law?

At this time, we have not received any guidance from the Michigan Department of Education as it relates to the impact on the Third Grade Reading law. We will continue to monitor and provide you with updated information as it becomes available. We encourage families to continue to reference the district Read by Grade Three resources until further information is available.

 

What about families who do not have internet access?

If you need assistance with a wifi connection Comcast is helping out (click link)! A survey has been sent to our community to support technology needs:   Please complete by Wednesday, March 18 by 3pm so we can ensure students have what they need to access their Google Classroom. The survey can be accessed HERE.

 

Will school lunches be available for those who rely on them?

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has received a waiver from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) that allows providers of school meals to serve meals without having to keep children together and on-site. This waiver allows districts to explore creative options for feeding children who depend on these meals even if the school building is closed.  Breakfast and lunch meals, served under the program called Unanticipated School Closure SFSP, are available to all children at no cost. Allen Park Public Schools is offering breakfast and lunch M-F between 9-11 am at the back (athletic) entrance of the high school (door 13). If you have not already done so, please complete the survey HERE so we can adequately plan to have meals available.

  

How can parents help?

  • Take advantage of the resources provided, and consider having your child(ren) spend time with these learning opportunities each day. Students thrive on structure, so carving out time for learning will help them maintain some sense of normalcy in an otherwise uncertain time.

  • Ensure that all family members follow the guidelines provided by the Governor and MDHHH to slow the spread of COVID-19. The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 continues to be:

    • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.

    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

    • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

    • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.

    • Replace handshakes with elbow bumps.

    • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.

    • Provide adequate supplies within easy reach, including tissues and hand sanitizer.

    • Disinfect common area surfaces and objects, especially phones and items that may touch your face.

    • Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath. If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your healthcare provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.

 

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus

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Governor Whitmer Statement on Instructional Time During School Closure

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued the following statement regarding instructional time during school closure.

"Earlier today the Michigan Department of Education issued a memo regarding Instructional Time During School Closure. I know it caused a lot of confusion and panic among schools, teachers, students, and families. I wanted to provide some clarification from the perspective of the Governor’s Office.

"The memo does not mean that school work done during the mandatory school closure won’t 'count' toward grades, credits, or graduation. Each district should determine what services and supports they are able to provide during this unprecedented crisis. Many are focusing on meeting basic needs and are working around the clock to provide breakfast and lunch for hungry students. Other districts have the ability to provide more learning support as a result of one-to-one technology initiatives. I am in awe of the work that school employees are doing to support their kids and I applaud their efforts.

"As you know, the situation has changed rapidly over the course of the past ten days. We do not know what the future will hold, but we are absolutely committed to ensuring the needs of our students, parents, and families are met as we navigate these uncharted waters. I will be working in the coming days to ensure our seniors graduate and that no child is held back as a result of our ability to provide face-to-face instruction during the COVID-19 school closure.

"To teachers, administrators, and support staff – I thank you for stepping up and helping your students and families.

To students and especially parents, hang in there. We will get through this."

The Detroit Field Office would like to thank everyone for all they are doing to stay safe and work through this difficult time.  Like a few days ago, I thought it might be best to send out an email that includes and updates the information, resources, and links relating to COVID-19.  This is a rapidly changing list and it is by no means inclusive.  All sites are in the public domain, so feel free to forward to anyone else who may benefit from the information.  If you have any information you would like to add please let me know.

 

Links that are newly added that were not included in the previous email are noted as: NEW

Links and information that has been updated since the previous email are noted as: UPDATED

 

Important COVID-19 Websites:

 

HUD Resources/Links:

 

Childcare and School Websites:

 

Other Government Websites:

 

Business Closures/Help:

 

Non-Profit Assistance:

 

NEW: Free Educational Online Shopping Resources:

Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Enhancing Operational Capacity and Efficiency in Hospitals 

  

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-13, to temporarily lift regulatory requirements on hospitals and care facilities and help ensure an adequate number of health care providers available to patients during the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Under the executive order, effective immediately and until Wednesday, April 15 at 11:59pm, The Michigan Departments of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) may take steps to ensure more people receive care. 

 

Executive Order 2020-13 grants LARA and DHHS authority to waive or defer certain requirements in order to expedite the process of bringing additional care facilities online during the COVID-19 emergency. The order also empowers LARA to ensure an adequate supply of care providers during the emergency by granting the department additional flexibility in its decisions about licensing, registration, and workflow requirements. 

 

“This is a crisis unlike any we’ve seen before, and we must do everything we can to ensure care for the most people,” said Governor Whitmer. “This executive order will help expand capacity so more people can access the care they need while we work to mitigate the spread of coronavirus. I will continue to work quickly with our partners in state government and with hospitals and care facilities to protect Michigan families.” 

 

“Governor Whitmer is working around the clock with state government officials and our partners in the health care industry to ensure access to care for Michiganders,” said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “This executive order will help us meet that goal and help people across the state access the care they need. It’s a critical step at a time when we need all hands on deck to address this crisis.” 

 

Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:   

  • Fever     
  • Cough     
  • Shortness of breath     

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is: 

  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.     
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.       
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.       
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.       
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.       
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.      
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.     

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus  

 

For those who have questions about the state’s actions to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, please call the COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-535-6136 between 8AM - 5PM daily.  

 

To view executive order 2020-13, click the link below:  

CDC badge

This interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the transmission and severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will update this guidance as needed and as additional information becomes available. Please check the CDC COVID-19 website periodically for updated interim guidance.

Health officials are currently taking steps to prevent the introduction and spread of COVID-19 into US communities. Schools play an important role in this effort. Through collaboration and coordination with local health departments, schools should take steps to disseminate information about the disease and its potential transmission within their school community. Schools should prepare to take steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among their students and staff should local health officials identify such a need.

Schools should continue to collaborate, share information, and review plans with local health officials to help protect the whole school community, including those with special health needs. School plans should be designed to complement other community mitigation strategies to protect high risk populations and the healthcare system, and minimize disruption to teaching and learning and protect students and staff from social stigma and discrimination. Plans should build on everyday practices (e.g., encouraging hand hygiene, monitoring absenteeism, communicating routinely) that include strategies for beforeduring, and after a possible outbreak.

 

 

How COVID-19  Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
  • Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

The virus that causes COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in some affected geographic areas.

 

Public health and other experts will take calls from residents and answer questions regarding health. People can also be directed to local resources and services available through state government departments.
The hotline will be run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week.
1-888-535-6136.
Allen Park Public School Staff, Students, and Families Update,
 
Allen Park Public Schools will be closed for students and staff effective immediately, Friday, March 13, 2020. 
 
This is a result of Governor Whitmer’s order to close all K-12 school buildings, public, private, and boarding, starting Monday, March 16 until Sunday, April 5. 
 
Allen Park  Public Schools spring break will take place from Friday, April 3rd through Sunday, April 12th. Students will return to school on Monday, April 13, 2020.
 
Thank you,
Michael H Darga, Superintendent
Allen Park Public Schools
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gov. Whitmer made an announcement tonight that she is closing ALL K-12 Schools in the state of Michigan for 3 weeks - Monday, March 16 - April 5th.  
 
Based on this information, staff members will NOT be reporting to their buildings tomorrow , Friday, March 13th. I feel we need more direction from the Governor's office on what is expected during this extended break.  
 
Please keep in mind that this is an ever changing situation. Districts have a lot of questions, we will continue to work through our organizations and Wayne RESA.  
 
Please continue to monitor your email for updates. 
 
Thank you,
Mike D.
 

Governor Whitmer Orders Temporary Prohibition on Large Assemblages and Events Over 50 People 

Order follows new CDC guidance on large events and mass gatherings 

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-11, to prohibit all events over 50 people or assemblages in shared indoor spaces over 50 people beginning Tuesday, March 17 at 9:00am.  

Executive Order 2020-11 changes the temporary restrictions imposed on events and assemblages by Executive Order 2020-5, to correspond with the most recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and PreventionWhen the new restrictions go into effect, Executive Order 2020-5 will be rescinded. This order does not change the scope of restrictions imposed by Executive Order 2020-5 as to the closure of elementary school buildings and secondary school buildings. 

The new restrictions on events and assemblages go into effect on March 17, 2020 at 9:00am, and will remain in place, like the school closure restrictions, until April 5, 2020 at 5:00pm.  

This order provides an exception from its prohibition on assemblages for health care facilities, workplaces not open to the public, the state legislature, mass transit, the purchase of groceries or consumer goods, and the performance of agricultural or construction work.  

“My number one priority remains to protect the most people we can from the spread of coronavirus,” said Governor Whitmer. “We are all better off when all of us are healthy, and that’s especially true for the most vulnerable. These aggressive actions are aimed at saving lives. My administration will continue to do everything we can to mitigate the spread of the disease and ensure our children, families, and businesses have the support they need during these challenging times. We are going to pull through this together, just as Michigan has done in the past.” 

“The purpose of the Executive Order, and taking actions like these, is to limit close contact between individuals because of the specific way the virus spreads through respiratory droplets,” said MDHHS Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “These are very difficult decisions, but I believe together we can work to make the necessary adjustments to contain the pandemic and support one another.” 

Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:  

  • Fever   
  • Cough   
  • Shortness of breath   

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is to:  

  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.   
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.     
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.     
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.     
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.     
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.   
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.   

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus. 

Beaumont’s Coronavirus/COVID-19 Hotline provides accurate information regarding COVID-19 symptoms, as well as virtual screening for individuals experiencing symptoms, officials said. Beaumont nurses will answer questions and assist patients with treating symptoms at home, following up with primary physicians and seeking treatment at an emergency center.

Beaumont urges patients with COVID-19 symptoms to call the hotline before being examined by a physician, officials said.

  • Beaumont Coronavirus/COVID-19 Hotline: 248-551-7000
  • Open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday - Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday - Sunday

The Detroit Medical Center established an after hours COVID-19 hotline for anyone with questions regarding the virus.

Wayne County’s Health Division is operating a hotline for information about COVID-19.

  • Wayne County Coronavirus Hotline: 734-287-7870
  • Open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday - Friday

Oakland County also established a Help Hotline after declaring a state of emergency today. The hotline will address residents’ non-health needs, such as food or housing assistance, according to officials. Callers with specific needs will be appropriately redirected, officials said.

  • Oakland County Help Hotline: 248-858-1000
  • Open from 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.

In response to the financial hardships that COVID-19 can pose on affected families in Southeastern Michigan, United Way has launched a Community Health Fund to assist partner organizations and their response efforts, officials said.

United Way also hosts a hotline to help people access necessary resources during times of crisis.

  • United Way Hotline: 2-1-1
  • Open 24 hours a day

Speak Up Research Initiative

Parents’ Views on E-Learning During School Closure

In response to the COVID-19 virus crisis, Project Tomorrow has created this no-cost survey to help K-12 schools and districts collect feedback from parents about the viability of online or e-learning during school closure, and parents’ concerns about that approach for their child. Your feedback, therefore, on this short 5-minute survey will help your local school and district leaders understand the potential impact of online or e-learning on your child and your family.  Additionally, the views of parents, just like you, will help state and federal leaders understand what is possible to support learning during this COVID-19 virus crisis.  Your feedback is essential.  Thank you for contributing your thoughts today.

https://speakup.tomorrow.org/SIDstart  

Technology Agreement Form
 
Governor Whitmer video canceling schools
 
 
MHSAA updates
 
WorldoMeter Website
 
Coronavirusnow.com
 
Johns Hopkins Mapping COVID
 
 
UofM Health
 
Oakland County Health 
 
Beaumont Health
 
Mclaren Health 
 
DMC 
 
WXYZ news 
 
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CDC Coronavirus page
 
 
Michigan Department of Heatlh Page
 
Wayne county Coronavirus 
 
WHO Page
 
Michigan.gov 
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 23, 2020

 

Whitmer Administration: School Food Service Considered Critical Infrastructure, Should Continue

 

LANSING -- Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's office issued the following statement today from Press Secretary Tiffany Brown on the governor's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order:

"Gov. Whitmer is committed to ensuring that Michigan students have access to the food they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the governor's executive order, K-12 school food services are considered critical infrastructure and should continue. The governor deeply appreciates the vital work that our frontline school employees are doing every day to ensure that our kids have the food they need while the order is in effect."