Gov. Andy Beshear recommended closing all schools across the state – public and private – to prevent the spread of COVID-19. He’s asking schools to close Monday, and stay closed for at least two weeks.
“This is a big but necessary step,” Beshear said at a press conference Thursday evening.
Beshear joins the governors of Ohio and Maryland in calling for statewide school closures. He said while early research on COVID-19 suggests the virus is not particularly dangerous to children, young people can still catch and transmit the virus to more vulnerable people, like the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.
“This is another critical step to take on social distancing, and what we are doing to protect the most vulnerable,” he said.
Interim Education Commissioner Kevin Brown said he “strongly supports” the governor’s recommendation. He encouraged districts to create Non-Traditional Instruction (NTI) plans, which allow districts to get up to 10 closures counted as instructional days. NTI plans lay out how schools continue to engage students in learning during closures, through online materials or paper packets sent home.