All Arizona public schools will be closed through Friday, March 27, in an effort to diminish the spread of coronavirus in our community.
The announcement was made in a joint statement by Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and state Superintendent of Schools Kathy Hoffman. “We will continue to work together and assess this situation on a 24/7 basis.”
The safest place for children to be is at home, Ducey and Hoffman said in an open letter — and a video message — to parents. “They should not be cared for by elderly adults or those with underlying health conditions, including grandparents and other family members.” Efforts are underway to assemble resources and form community partnerships to “reduce the impact of these closures on families, teachers, and school communities.” Those efforts include working with the USDA to allow schools to begin summer food service operations and provide boxed meals as needed.
“We understand many parents have questions about childcare options. It is the recommendation of public health officials that kids who are not at school remain at home to the greatest extent possible. For families for whom that’s not an option, we are coordinating with partners in the non-profit, faith-based and education communities to make available childcare options to families who need it.
“For our dedicated school employees, we’re working together to make sure you don’t see any disruption to your pay. We’ll also be consulting with our district and legislative partners to determine the extent of any potential makeup days.”
Earlier today, the Arizona Education Association had called for statewide closure of public schools until “the state had a plan in place to ensure safe and healthy schools.” In a letter to Governor Ducey, AEA president Joe Thomas asked the governor for a special legislative session to address the COVID-19 crisis. The AEA is the largest professional association for public school employees in Arizona.
The Arizona Department of Health Services had reported 12 confirmed cases of coronavirus as of today.
The team at Raising Arizona Kids is continuously updating a web page where you can find links to resources and breaking news about the coronavirus in Arizona.
We’re also collecting ideas for educational “boredom busters” for kids during for self-quarantine time at home.
Please contact us if you have additional information we should share.