Maryland county allowing in-person class in private schools

ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) — Maryland’s most populous county is allowing private schools to hold in-person classes.

Montgomery County’s health officer says he still believes it’s not safe for schools to reopen, but he lifted an earlier order Friday that said schools must remain closed through Oct. 1 due to the coronavirus.

The decision caps days of back-and-forth. Dr. Travis Gayles first issued an order closing in-person classes on July 31.

Gov. Larry Hogan issued an order Monday removing the authority of local health officers to close schools.

Gayles issued a new directive on Wednesday to prevent in-person classes. Hogan’s health secretary sent a memo to health officials a day later advising against such directives.

Public schools in the county plan to provide online-only learning for the first semester of the school year.