CONCORD, N.H. (CBS) – All New Hampshire schools must provide the option for in-person learning five days a week by April 19, Gov. Chris Sununu announced on Thursday.

About 60% of schools are already learning in person full-time. Sununu said the deadline will provide districts and parents “plenty of time” to make adjustments.

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Schools will be permitted to offer a remote only option for parents who are not comfortable sending their children to the classroom.

“We have said all along, and it has been proven, that schools can reopen safely. And that remains as true today as ever,” Sununu said.

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New Hampshire has already made teachers eligible to receive their COVID vaccine. Sununu said that by the time schools are required to reopen fully, any teacher who wants to receive their vaccine will have had time to receive both doses.

Sununu previously announced that by February all schools had to offer at least two days of in-person learning per week, which he said was a “ramp up” to his Thursday announcement.

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“We just all know need to get our kids back into schools,” Sununu said. “Not just for education reasons. For mental health reasons, for socialization. During the crisis, remote learning was a good backstop. But it doesn’t come nearly close to providing the fulfillment and enrichment that being in the classroom, not just a couple days a week, but five days a week, can really allow.”

CBSBoston.com Staff