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Governor Orders All Schools to Close

On Thursday, March 12th, Governor Tony Evers  directed that all k-12 schools in Wisconsin–public and private–be closed as of 5:00 pm, Wednesday, March 18th.  Lodi District Administrator, Chuck Pursell, has already sent a letter to parents and guardians in the Lodi Schools preparing them for this possibility.

State Wide

In the press release, Evers is quoted:

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.

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.

The actual closure order was handed down by Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Andrea Palm.  She is acting under the authority of Wis. Stat. § 252.02(3) which states:

(3) The department may close schools and forbid public gatherings in schools, churches, and other places to control outbreaks and epidemics.

The governor anticipates allowing schools to reopen on April 6th.  That date, however, is “subject to change pending further information.”

Lodi Schools

The Lodi School District–through Chuck Pursell–has been keeping the community posted through press releases and messaging.  They are expected to continue doing so throughout this situation1To get notice of news as it’s released, you can follow the Lodi Valley Chronicle on Twitter @LodiValley..

Text of the Order

Under authority of Wis. Stat. § 252.02(3) and at the direction of Governor Tony Evers, I, Andrea Palm, Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, order the closure of all public and private Wisconsin schools for purposes of pupil instruction and extracurricular activities, beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020, with an anticipated reopening on April 6, 2020. The date of reopening is subject to change pending further information.

Based on the assessment of the information available regarding the infectious disease, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19”), closure is a reasonable and necessary step to prevent, suppress, and control this disease. To prevent further illness, the schools will be closed until the aforementioned anticipated date of reopening. This order does not prevent a school from providing virtual instruction to pupils.

Andrea Palm
Secretary
State of Wisconsin
Department of Health Services

Footnotes

Footnotes
1 To get notice of news as it’s released, you can follow the Lodi Valley Chronicle on Twitter @LodiValley.

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