Governor Evers orders statewide closure of all K-12 schools
FOR THE TOMAHAWK LEADER
MADISON — Governor Tony Evers on March 13 ordered all public and private K-12 schools in Wisconsin to close by Wednesday, March 18, as part of the state’s efforts to respond to and contain the spread of COVID-19. The closure was slated to begin Wednesday “in order to give school districts ample time to make plans for kids, families, educators, and staff,” a statement from Evers’ office said.
Evers directed Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Andrea Palm to issue an agency order mandating the statewide shutdown of schools hours after 11 new coronavirus cases were reported in Wisconsin. As of Monday, March 16, 34 people had tested positive for the virus in the state, according to DHS.
The statement said school districts, particularly those in counties with reported COVID-19 cases, could choose to close before March 18. Schools are anticipated to reopen on April 6, but that date may change pending further information.
“Closing our schools is not a decision I made lightly, but keeping our kids, our educators, our families, and our communities safe is a top priority as we continue our work to respond to and prevent further spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin,” Evers said. “Kids and families across Wisconsin often depend on our schools to access food and care. We are going to continue working to do everything we can to ensure kids and families have the resources and support they need while schools are closed.”
Tomahawk School District Administrator Terry Reynolds told the Tomahawk Leader on Monday, March 16 that he would be releasing a note to parents “outlining more specifics of how we are moving forward.”