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Over 750,000 Students To Stay Home In Southern California Due To Coronavirus

The closure of school districts in Los Angeles and San Diego was regarded as an impact move for California to curb the outbreak of COVID-19.
14 Mar 2020 08:29
Over 750,000 Students To Stay Home In Southern California Due To Coronavirus
A staff member wearing a face mask pushes the shopping carts outside a supermarket in Los Angeles, California, the United States, March 4, 2020. (Xinhua/Li Ying)

More than 750,000 students in Los Angeles and San Diego will stay home as the two largest school districts in California, announced on Friday that both will close, effective Monday, in an effort to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

In a joint statement, Austin Beutner of Los Angeles Unified School District and Cindy Martin of San Diego Unified School District said California is now in a critical new phase in the fight to stop the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is evidence the virus is already present in the communities we serve, and our efforts now must be aimed at preventing its spread,” the statement said. “We believe closing the state’s two largest school districts will make an important contribution to this effort.”

The closure, which will go into effect Monday, was regarded as an impact move for the Golden State to curb the disease outbreak. San Francisco Unified School District already announced they would close on Thursday.

Photo taken on March 4, 2020 shows the empty shelf of face masks in a supermarket in Los Angeles, California, the United States. (Xinhua/Li Ying)

Photo taken on March 4, 2020 shows the empty shelf of face masks in a supermarket in Los Angeles, California, the United States. (Xinhua/Li Ying)

California officials are calling for the cancellation of all gatherings with 250 or more people to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The state recorded 198 cases of the novel coronavirus as of Thursday, up from 177 the day before.

The two superintendents also noted that the decision to close for two weeks was partly due to the lack of testing for coronavirus.

“The public health crisis created by the coronavirus is not something any of us could reasonably have expected to happen, and we’re in uncharted waters as we work to prevent the spread of the illness,” Beutner said in a statement. “We are now at a point where the balance has shifted and the appropriate path is to close schools. We are taking this step to keep our school communities safe.”

Beutner said that, even with schools closed, employees will be paid over the next two weeks and the districts’ Family Resource Centers, where children can get a warm meal, will also be open on daytime from March 18.

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