The Orange County Board of Education has approved a new measure that would allow schools to reopen in August for in-person classes and instruction, despite a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in the county and in California, CBS Los Angeles reports.

What’s happening:

  • The board voted 4-1 Monday to allow schools to reopen.
  • Students and teachers can attend class without masks or social distancing, too.
  • Last month, the board held a meeting with experts who said in a paper that requiring students to wear masks “is not only difficult but may even be harmful over time.”
  • The paper reportedly said “social distancing of children and reduction of classroom size and census may be considered, but not vital to implement for school-aged children.”
  • The paper reportedly said “parents are in the best position to determine the education environment that best suits their children rather than government officials.”
  • The experts said there should be temperature checks in the schools. Hand washing and using hand sanitizer should be encouraged, too.

California sees a trend

  • California has seen a recent surge in COVID-19 cases, leading Gov. Gavin Newsom to issue a second lockdown for businesses, like bars and indoor restaurants, according to The Los Angeles Times.
  • Earlier this month, Orange County saw a 9.4% increase in hospitalizations in three days. Experts told ABC-7 the new trend would continue.
  • “For Orange County specifically, I would say we’re in the top of the 2nd inning. I mean, this is just the beginning. We’ve heard about it all over the country, but it’s real now for us in Orange County,” said Dr. James Keany, a doctor in the emergency department at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo.