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Schools Closed Through Apr. 7 and More Coronavirus News

As coronavirus continues to spread in Georgia, Clarke County public schools will remain closed through Apr. 7, interim superintendent Xernona Thomas told parents and staff over the weekend.

Thomas cited Athens-Clarke County’s shelter-in-place ordinance, which took effect Mar. 20 and requires residents to stay in their homes unless going out for essential business, like work or grocery shopping, although the ordinance specifically exempts schools.

CCSD had originally planned to close for the week of Mar. 16. Last week Gov. Brian Kemp closed all K-12 schools statewide until the end of the month.

In addition, high school proms, scheduled for Apr. 3, have been postponed. Graduation ceremonies are up in the air, as Stegeman Coliseum, the traditional site, is unavailable because the UGA campus is closed for the semester.

CCSD will continue to prepare free breakfast and lunch for students. Meals can be picked up at Olgethorpe Avenue Elementary and Hilsman Middle schools, and are being delivered by school bus to dozens of neighborhoods. The district served 17,000 meals over four days last week.

Regarding the shelter-in-place ordinance, ACC posted a list of frequently asked questions, as well as a list of essential and nonessential businesses.

Athens has had 10 confirmed cases of coronavirus as of Sunday night, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health. That number is unchanged since the shelter-in-place ordinance took effect. Georgia has had 620 confirmed cases and 25 deaths. Slightly over 4,000 people have been tested statewide.