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Oregon schools closed through April 28; Calif. schools ‘unlikely’ to reopen before summer: governors

Oregon schools from kindergarten through grade 12 will now remain closed through April 28  because of the coronavirus outbreak, Gov. Kate Brown said Tuesday.

The announcement came the same day that the governor of Kansas announced her state’s schools would not reopen this school year and that California’s governor said that state’s schools were “unlikely” to reopen until fall.

The new executive action in Oregon extends a school closure order that initially was in effect until March 31, FOX 12 Oregon reported.

KANSAS GOVERNOR ORDERS PUBLIC SCHOOLS TO CLOSE FOR THE REST OF THE SCHOOL YEAR

“I do not take the decision to extend school closures lightly,” Brown, a Democrat, said in a statement. “This will have real impacts on Oregon’s students, parents, and educators. But we must act now to flatten the curve and slow the rate of COVID-19 transmission in Oregon, otherwise we face a higher strain on our medical system and greater loss of life to this disease.”

“We must act now to flatten the curve and slow the rate of COVID-19 transmission in Oregon, otherwise we face a higher strain on our medical system and greater loss of life to this disease.”

— Oregon Gov. Kate Brown

Gov. Kate Brown of Oregon speaks in Salem, Ore., in an undated photo. (Associated Press)

Gov. Kate Brown of Oregon speaks in Salem, Ore., in an undated photo. (Associated Press)

As of late Tuesday, Oregon had 65 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus and had recorded one death, a 70-year-old U.S. military veteran.

CORONAVIRUS HITS VETERANS HOME IN OREGON

Oregon’s northern neighbor, Washington state, has seen more than 1,000 cases of the virus – second only to New York state’s 1,700 in the U.S. – and has recorded more than 50 deaths.

Brown on Tuesday also signed executive orders that were announced Monday, limiting bars and restaurants to take-out orders only, and prohibiting gatherings of more than 25 people in order to combat spread of the virus, FOX 12 reported.

Previously Tuesday, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly announced that schools in her state would remain closed for the rest of the school year and that classes would be held remotely.

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday it was “unlikely” that schools would reopen before the summer break but did not issue an order in that regard.

“I would plan and assume it is unlikely that many of these schools, few if any, will open before the summer break,” Newsom said at a news conference, according to the Bay Area’s FOX 2

“I don’t want to mislead you, to six-plus million kids in our system and their families, they need to make some plans at a time when a lot of plans are already being curtailed,” Newsom added. “But planning with kids is some of the most challenging planning.”

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California has applied for a federal waiver so children would not have to face academic tests once they eventually return to school, Newsom said, according to FOX 2.

“We think it is totally inappropriate for kids to worry about coming back and being tested,” he said.

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