Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted on Thursday announced another round of reopening dates for businesses and activities. Childcare centers, along with activities from low-impact sports leagues to horse racing to swimming in public pools, will resume this month.
Childcare providers in Ohio will be permitted to reopen May 31 if they meet required safety protocols.
Preschool and school-aged children limits will be nine per classroom, with six per classroom for infants and toddlers. Rigorous hand washing procedures will also have to followed.
“Our goal is to have the safest child care system in the nation – one that nurtures the health and continued growth and development of our children and one that protects the health and safety of our child care workers and teachers,” said Governor DeWine. “Moving forward, child care is going to look different for children, parents, and teachers. But we must get this right or we run the risk of exposing more people to COVID-19.”
To assist in the reopening of child care centers, Ohio will use more than $60 million in federal CARES Act funding to provide reopening grants to all of Ohio’s childcare providers, including family childcare, childcare centers, and both publicly-funded and private providers. More information on how to apply will be posted to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services’ website soon.
Governor DeWine also announced that Ohio will fund a research project to study best practices for controlling the spread of COVID-19 in child care settings. Information gathered from the study will continue to inform child care regulations moving forward.
The reopening date of May 31 also applies to day camps that can meet required safety protocols. A detailed list of guidelines and best practices for day camps will be available soon at coronavirus.ohio.gov.
On May 21, campgrounds in Ohio will be permitted to reopen, with Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles locations allowed to open May 26. Both will have to meet safety protocols to open.
Ohio BMV services that can be accomplished online should still be done online. More details on online BMV services can be found at oplates.com.
An extension on renewals remains in place.
“There will be some cases where you have to go into the BMV but only go as absolutely necessary,” Husted said.
More options for physical activity will also be available later this month. Gyms and fitness centers can open May 26.
Non-contact and limited contact sports leagues can also reopen on May 26. That does include baseball and softball, although some area leagues have already been canceled for the summer.
School buildings remain closed, but school grounds are not technically closed by the order, according to Husted.
Public pools that are regulated by local health departments in Ohio will be permitted to reopen May 26 if these facilities can meet required safety protocols.
Full regulations for all reopenings can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov.
“May is a new chapter in our response to COVID-19,” said Husted. “We’re trying to keep a balance between health of Ohioans and the health of our economy. Some more businesses may be reopening but keep in mind that it will be up to the local health departments to control what reopens and what does not.”