As COVID-19 continues to prove a threat, public authorities are doing their best to prevent a larger impact. This morning, March 15, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz addressed the state about canceling school in Minnesota.
The closing of all Minnesota K-12 schools will occur by Wednesday, March 18th. Buffalo-Hanover-Montrose schools updated parents in the afternoon that students will not report to school on Monday or Tuesday, effectively canceling school, at least in-person, through April 6. During this morning’s conference, Walz confirmed 35 cases of the virus statewide.
Many students at BHS are wondering about the recent events. “It’s frustrating,” said senior Grace Thompson, “because there’s a lot of things, since I’m a senior, that I’ve been looking forward to since I’ve been in high school, and I know that a lot of things that are being canceled. Like prom might not even happen, graduation might not even happen. Spring break is supposed to be a fun time, and now not a lot of people are going on trips because of this. People are getting scared. And, like, sports? I don’t even know if I’m going to get to play lacrosse, and that’s scary because it’s my senior year. For choir, solo and ensemble was canceled. I cried.”
Walz said he plans to keep the number of coronavirus cases low within Minnesota schools.
“While children have proven to be less vulnerable to this virus, and we haven’t had significant spreading in our schools, we do anticipate that COVID-19 will have a sizable impact on our education system in the coming weeks, months, and potentially the coming year,” Walz stated.
“We cannot wait until the pandemic is in our schools to figure things out,” Walz continued. “That’s why executive order 20-02 that I just signed will begin the process of closing our schools starting tomorrow. Schools will be closed by Wednesday through the 27th of March.”
Some schools have already begun this process, but all must be closed by Wednesday.
“This time period is to allow our school districts to adapt,” Walz said, “to prepare for distant learning, and to do the things we need to do that are multifold when a decision like this is made.”
Both state and district-wide, the idea is that the given time off will provide an opportunity for teachers and students to prepare for distance learning.
This time of closure is an opportunity to figure out what needs to be done to continue learning, not to shut it down altogether.
Spring break will occur as usual.