Colorado’s schools are now closed through at least April 30 as the state pushes for residents to stay in their homes in a bid to fight the spread of the new coronavirus, Gov. Jared Polis announced during a Wednesday news conference.
“We are confident schools will not be able to resume statewide by April 30,” Polis said. “There are some districts that based on that parameter or on their own information from their county health department are saying they wont be able to return to their school buildings at all this year.”
Two weeks ago, Polis mandated all public and private schools in the state close to in-person learning through April 17.
Since then, Polis issued a statewide stay-at-home order effective through April 11. On Tuesday, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock said he will extend the city’s stay-at-home order through April 30.
With school doors closed, districts across the state turned to remote learning to keep students engaged with districts launching online schooling and testing out distance-style curriculum.
“While children will always remember this school year for their entire lives as one in which they were out of school for a number of months, they wont lack the academic achievement they need to advance to the next grade level,” Polis said. “While our children are not at the highest risk from this virus… we want to make sure they’re not at risk for losing a year’s worth of education.”
Polis thanked districts, superintendents, principals, teachers, staff, parents and students for being adaptive and innovative during trying times.
The governor highlighted several school systems — Englewood, Cañon City, Durango — for their dedication to their students and creativity in remote learning.
“Just as we highlight examples of districts doing a good job, I know there are some districts with a learning curve,” Polis said. “It’s important we express our gratitude to educators in our schools for stepping up and meeting the needs of our kids. It’s, of course, important educationally but it’s also very important for kids to have that schedule and that routine to help make sure they can more effectively manage these challenging times.”
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