SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is easing statewide restrictions placed on school districts with the goal of more students returning to in-person instruction by February. The governor’s announcement Wednesday came despite an ongoing state surge in the number of people diagnosed with the coronavirus. Brown’s office says starting Jan. 1, the governor’s instructions for returning to school will be “advisory rather than mandatory.” The governor said moving forward, the decision to resume in-person instruction must be made locally, district by district, school by school. The governor said earlier this week educators and school staff will be prioritized for COVID-19 vaccines.