Delaware schools are now closed through mid-May in the effort to fight novel coronavirus COVID-19, Gov. John Carney announced late Monday.
Carney ordered all the schools closed through May 15, 2020, after a discussion with superintendents an charter school leaders, he said, noting it was initially planned to be only a two-week closure that would've seen schools re-open on March 30.
“We have spent a significant portion of the last week discussing plans for remote instruction, the delivery of meals, and other social services," Carney said. "This is an unusual time--but children still deserve access to a quality education, and families rely on the social services we deliver in our schools every day. We’ll continue to work directly with school leaders on these important issues.”
He also said the administration "intends to formally recommend" no district or charter extends its calendar beyond the end of June, and that the state has "submitted a waiver to the U.S. Department of Education requesting Delaware be exempt from state testing this year to focus our efforts on student instruction."
He said, as of Monday:
- Districts and charter schools will remain closed through May 15.
- Districts and charters are providing students with ongoing access to meals.
- Districts and charters will work with their staffs to create remote instruction plans so students can continue to learn during this crisis. The Department of Education also has a list of learning activities.
- The school calendar will likely be adjusted to go beyond when it was scheduled to end.
- If possible, we hope to provide students with instruction, wraparound services, extracurriculars, and sports experiences once school resumes.
- Secretary of Education Dr. Susan Bunting plans to recommend forgiveness to the State Board of Education so that no district or charter would go beyond the end of June.
- We submitted a waiver to the U.S. Department of Education requesting Delaware be exempt from assessment and accountability requirements for the 2019-20 school year.
- While we strongly believe in measuring results, we want to use any remaining time in this year's school calendar for student instruction.