(WRN) -- Governor Tony Evers believes K-12 schools in Wisconsin can open safely — if state residents do what they can to stay clear of COVID-19.

“Whether you have your own children or not, I’m really encouraging you to take it easy. Be as safe as possible, don’t get into small rooms with a whole bunch of people that don’t have masks, and help us make sure that schools open safely,” Evers said during a media conference call Tuesday.

“If people really want those schools to be open, we all need to pay attention to and pay attention to our own health, and then I think it will be much easier for them to open safely.”

Evers noted that the state ;Department of Public Instruction has issued “Education Forward,” guidance on how districts around the state can safely educate their students this fall.

“I believe that we can open schools, and so I am not in any position to say we’re going to, or not going to and I’m ordering them closed. That gets at an issue about what orders I can do or not do. I’m still optimistic that they can open, and there’s lots of options,” the governor said.

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