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State Superintendent Salmon Announces Temporary Closure of Maryland Public Schools

Contact: Samantha Foley, 410-767-0482

BALTIMORE –  This afternoon, during Governor Larry Hogan’s press conference, Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools, directed that effective Monday, March 16th, through Friday, March 27th, all public schools in Maryland will be closed. All scheduled school-sanctioned travel for students and staff will also be cancelled effective immediately.

“It is crucial that we take immediate measures to slow the spread of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in school communities around the State,” said Dr. Karen Salmon. “During the time of school closure, all public school buildings and school buses should be cleaned and disinfected to prevent spread of the virus upon the return of students and staff to school.”

Additionally, Dr. Salmon recommended that days previously scheduled for spring break be used for make-up days.  Administrators, faculty, staff, and parents/guardians should begin to immediately prepare for, and put into place, measures for the continuity of educational services during this prolonged period of school closure.

Plans regarding childcare services are being developed by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) at this time to ensure that the children of emergency services personnel (particularly those working in healthcare facilities) have access to childcare throughout the prolonged period of school closure. MSDE immediately started working to ensure that vital services, such as the provision of meals to students, will continue to be provided throughout the duration of this period.

Incoming information will be continually evaluated as it becomes available to better inform decisions about proactive school closures. State and local officials will work together to continue to reassess needs for school closures on an ongoing basis.  Local school officials should remain in consistent communication with local health department officials regarding cases of COVID-19 that potentially could involve members of the school community.


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