Seattle Public Schools to close for two weeks in light of coronavirus concerns


Seattle Public Schools will close for a minimum of two weeks starting Thursday, according to an email sent to school administrators Wednesday.

The email said the decision was made after conferring with county and school officials. It instructs principals to treat the closure as if they are going on spring break, and lists some guidance for going forward.”We know you do not have time to do everything and we trust that you will do your best given the circumstances,” the email said.

The announcement comes after the district’s early move to stay open in an effort to make sure children don’t suddenly see a loss in services.

But since then, on Wednesday, Gov. Jay Inslee hinted that schools should be making contingency closure plans, in light of his restrictions on gatherings of over 250 in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties.

On Wednesday, two individual SPS schools had closed because of concerns of exposure at those particular schools.

A district spokesman was not immediately available for comment. The email the district sent administrators said that the details related to such matters as human resources, special education, food services, school cleaning, budgeting and graduations will be addressed later.

The guidance in the email says that teachers should send students home with any learning materials that have already been prepared. “Send home books for student [sic] to read if you have them,” it said.

schools will be locked and inaccessible to district staff.

“We want to reassure you that we recognize you can’t do it all in such a compressed time. Continue to do the best you can for your students and staff.”

The district planned to alert families at 1 p.m.

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