UTAH, Jan. 31, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — Gov. Spencer Cox has issued an executive order allowing state employees to take approved time off from their state positions to help in Utah’s public or private schools.
The Omicron variant of COVID-19 has brought an unprecedented wave of absenteeism among teachers and education staff, and labor shortages are exacerbating the problem, says the statement, issued Monday. Giving state employees the option to substitute teach, help in the cafeteria or perform other needed duties will ensure schools can continue to provide in-person learning experiences, it says.
“We know that kids learn best in the classroom, so we want to do what we can to help schools stay open,” Cox’s statement says. “Our teachers and our children deserve our support during this difficult phase of the pandemic.
“We hope many of the state’s 22,000 employees will take advantage of this opportunity to help our schools.”