SAN RAFAEL (CBS SF) — Marin County officials announced Thursday that it’s allowing 15 schools to reopen as COVID-19 data improves in the area.

The Marin County Public Health Officer approved waiver applications for 15 elementary schools, which could switch from online to in-person learning as early as Sept. 8, as long as coronavirus infection rates continue to trend downward.

“We’re at a critical juncture, and our ability to get kids back into school is up to all of us,” said Dr Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer.

The county currently remains in the first tier of the state’s reopening plan, but the number of coronavirus patients continues to drop and soon the county expects to be on the second tier.

The county’s school district, along with all other schools in the state, closed back in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Recently the state began allowing some schools and businesses to reopen, as long as the counties did not report upticks in coronavirus cases.

According to the state’s plan, the county disperses waivers to schools that see their COVID-19 cases decrease. Along with opening classes for kindergarten through sixth graders, the Special Education and Alternative Education programs will also take students again.

“This is the beginning of an eventual return to in-person school and is a tribute to the hard work of so many in our community over the past five months,” said County Superintendent of Schools Mary Jane Burke.

The county granted waivers to these schools, their affected grades in parentheses:

  • All Children Academics (K-5), San Rafael
  • Bayside Martin Luther King Jr. Academy (K-6), Marin City
  • Caulbridge School (K-6), San Rafael
  • Chronos Academy (K-6), San Anselmo
  • Laguna Elementary (K-6), Chileno Valley, West Marin
  • Lincoln Elementary (K-6), Hicks Valley, West Marin
  • Lycee Francais (K-6), Sausalito
  • Marin Waldorf (K-6), San Rafael
  • Mt. Tamalpais School (K-1), Mill Valley
  • New Village School (K-6), Sausalito
  • Northbridge Academy (2-6), Mill Valley
  • San Domenico School (K-6), San Anselmo
  • St. Anselm School, San Anselmo
  • Terra Marin (1-6), Mill Valley
  • Terra Micro Marin (K-6), Mill Valley

The schools not granted waivers can continue online learning programs for their students.

For more information about the county’s decisions for reopening schools as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, download the county’s guidelines.

As of Thursday, Marin County had tested 71,309 potential patients and saw a total of 4,084 cases, with 136 of them needing to be hospitalized. For more updates, visit the county’s COVID-19 site.