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Brecksville-Broadview Heights and Independence schools to reopen with in-person learning despite county health recommendations

The decisions follow local rallies for a return to fall sports and in-person learning

BRECKSVILLE, Ohio — The Brecksville-Broadview Heights school board met Monday and decided to move forward with it's hybrid learning plan after students & parents rallied for sports, in-person classes. 

In a 3-2 vote, the district decided to forego the recommendations made by the Cuyahoga County Board of Health last week to start school remotely due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. They also recommended that no extracurricular activities be held as long as learning is done by remote. 

Under the hybrid plan, students will attend class in-person for two days and engage in remote learning the remaining three days. The district will also proceed with the start of fall sports, in accordance with the Ohio High School Athletic Association. County health officials had recommended discontinuing all extracurricular activities, including sports.

The decision comes after a group of students and parents took their case to let kids back in classroom straight to decision makers late Monday afternoon.

At least 60 people were protesting outside of the Brecksville-Broadview Heights Board of Education building prior to the meeting  Monday evening. Their hope was to influence any board member who might be on the fence about letting students return to school and also onto the playing fields, as well as other extracurricular activities. 

Parents that we spoke to were equally emotional on both sides of the issue. 

HAPPENING NOW: Students, parents and others are protesting outside of the Brecksville-Broadciew Heights Board of Education. They are protesting because they would like students back in school.

Posted by WKYC Channel 3 - Cleveland on Monday, August 3, 2020

Independence Local Schools joined Brecksville-Broadview Heights with going against county health recommendations, by approving a plan Monday night for in-person learning, five days a week. In an email, Superintendent Ben Hegedish said that "in-person instruction may switch to remote, based on infection rates and government agency guidance. We are not deciding to start the year remote at this point, as we want to see how the infection data and Board of Health recommendations evolve over the next few weeks."

The start of school in Independence has been pushed back to September 2, to allow staff more time to prepare.

Berea, Warrensville, South Euclid-Lyndhurst will hold their meetings on Tuesday, with Rocky River set for their board meeting on Wednesday. 

RELATED: How do new state guidelines impact high school sports in Ohio?