UPDATED: Schools respond to coronavirus concern

Schools are closing or moving classes online as a result of the coronavirus. (Rendering courtesy U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Schools are closing or moving classes online as a result of the coronavirus. (Rendering courtesy U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Schools are closing or moving classes online as a result of the coronavirus. (Rendering courtesy U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Upated 3:51 p.m. March 18

The ACT tests for juniors March 24 and April 4 have been postponed. Additionally, The College Board cancelled May 2 SAT testing as well as March makeup exams. Registered students will receive refunds. Additional testing opportunities will be scheduled when feasible.

Updated 11:42 a.m. March 17 Chandler schools to offer curbside meals to any child under 18

Chandler USD will begin serving curbside pickup meals to any child under 18 from March 18-27. District enrollment is not required. The service will be extended if schools continue to be closed. Children must be present at pickup. Meals should be consumed off site after pickup.

The meals may be picked up at Chandler or Hamilton high schools’ main entrances between 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. A breakfast and a lunch will be served during each meal period.


Updated 4:02 p.m. March 15 State officials announce all Arizona schools will close through March 27

Gov. Doug Ducey and State Superintendent Kathy Hoffman announced the closure of all Arizona schools from March 16 through March 27. "The safest place for children during this time is at home," read the joint statement. "They should not be cared for by elderly adults or those with underlying health conditions, including grandparents and other family members." The state is looking to assemble resources and forming community partnerships in an effort to reduce the impact of the closures on families. The joint statement also addressed the state is working to make sure school employees do not see a disruption in pay due to the closures. The state is also engaging with federal officials in the event statewide standardized testing needs to be waived or postponed, according to the statement.

Updated 12:30 a.m. March 15 Mesa Public Schools announces closure

Mesa Public Schools announced late March 14 that the district would in fact close schools March 16. Officials had previously announced March 13 plans to reopen campuses on March 16. The statement was unclear when school would resume.

The district is "solidifying alternative methods of providing access to learning resources and as many other services as possible during the time that students are not reporting to school," read the statement from the district.

Chandler USD officials announced March 13 the district would reopen March 24, resuming class on time after a two-week spring break.

Updated 7:33 p.m. March 13 Mesa to return to school March 16

As neighboring districts announced closures "until further notice," Interim Mesa Public Schools Superintendent Pete Lesar announced Mesa schools would resume March 16 "with significant precautions in place."

The district updated its website to reflect steps its taking to ensure student and staff safety.

Updated 6:11 p.m. March 13 Gilbert Public Schools announces school closures

Gilbert Public Schools announced March 13 the district would close schools due to concerns around the coronavirus beginning March 17. According to a letter that went out to parents and families, the schools will remain closed "until further notice."

Updated 11:53 a.m. March 13 Tempe Union latest district to announce school closures

Tempe Union High School District officials announced March 13 that schools will close beginning March 16. The announcement came a day after the district's feeder schools in Tempe Elementary School District and Kyrene School District announced closures March 12.

"Because we work in a collaborative, tri-district manner, we feel that this is the best decision for our students, families, teachers, and staff," read a statement from the district.

The closures are a result of health and safety concerns related to the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19.

The district statement did not say when schools were expected to reopen, but did state "all school activities, athletics, and events will be cancelled until further notice."

Updated 9:30 p.m. March 12: Kyrene School District closes schools 'until further notice' due to coronavirus

The Kyrene School District announced the district will close schools "until further notice" due to coronavirus concerns, according to a statement from the district March 12.

The district closure came after Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman did not recommend widespread closures for K-12 schools in a call with Gov. Doug Ducey earlier in the day.

The Maricopa County Community College District announced March 12 that the district, which serves Chandler-Gilbert Community College, will extend its spring break to March 20.

"During this time, Maricopa faculty and staff will be developing options for alternative forms of delivery for in-person classes. Options may include delivery online," wrote interim Chancellor Steven Gonzales in a letter to students.

Park University, which has a campus in Gilbert, announced March 12 that as of March 16, all in-person classes will move online.

Arizona State University announced this week that all in-person classes would move online for two weeks and University of Arizona announced it will delay the start of classes returning from spring break to March 18, at that point the university will assess whether or not to continue in-person classes or move to online classes wherever possible.
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