Miami-Dade County, along with Broward County, will move to Phase 2 on Monday, September 14, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced Friday.
DeSantis made the announcement at a Noon press conference at the Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science in Miami. The Governor was joined by Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez and Miami-Dade Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho.
“Of course, the most significant aspect of that is it really clears the pathway for in-person instruction to resume,” added DeSantis, opening the possibility for in-person schooling to eventually start in both Miami-Dade and Broward counties.
Both counties have seen their respective positivity rate of infection drop over the last two weeks.
Friday, Florida’s Health Department reported Dade’s positivity rate at 4.86%, lowest in months, and the first day under 5 percent in the last 2-weeks. Broward’s positivity rate was 3.19% Friday. Palm Beach, which last week moved into Phase 2, reported a 4.64 percent rate of positive tests results.
Alberto M. Carvalho, superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools said the reopening date for MDPS schools could be announced as “early as next week.”
Carvalho said parents will have the choice to send their kids back to class or continue distance learning. In a previous poll the district conducted, more than half the parents preferred the kids return to school. Carvalho said, “the schoolhouse is the best place for children to learn,” adding that “this is good news for everyone.”
Carvalho also said social distancing will be enforced, but admitted that since 6 feet likely won’t be possible, masks will be required of students and staff. Nurses will be at each school.
DeSantis praised the Miami-Dade school district, saying it was “the best urban larger school district in the country”
The move to Phase 2 will also allow more type businesses to reopen, all with restrictions.
Gimenez said the county will announce “soon” which businesses can reopen
Palm Beach County’s Phase 2 reopening has opened bowling alleys, movie theaters, skating centers, escape rooms and trampoline centers, all at 50% capacity. Restaurants were allowed full outdoor seating, as well as permitting bar-top food service.
You may watch the entire press conference here.