As the coronavirus has cancelled events and shut down schools and businesses, many students across Louisiana have been left wondering whether they would return to campus before the school year ends in May. After much speculation, Governor John Bel Edwards announced in a press conference early this week that Louisiana schools will remain closed for the duration of the academic year. According to 4WWL, the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has been pressuring the governor to formally announce this decision, as it is clear that we are still far from returning to normalcy in the face of this pandemic.
"It's just not going to work by the time this is over," said Edwards. "It's just not going to be feasible to resume the operation of our schools this academic year."
While students may not be physically returning to schools, they will still continue their academic studies, as planned, until the end of the school year—through virtual and remote learning efforts. "Education will continue," said Edwards. "The school year continues. But they are not going onto the campuses."
This announcement follows the governor's previous order to close all public schools in mid-March, which was quickly followed by the closure of private schools and universities, as an effort to quell the risk of spreading the virus. Governor Edwards's initial order stated that schools would only stay closed until April 13, but this was later extended to April 30. This third extension into May should come as no surprise, as Louisiana is still largely shut down, with the state stay-at-home order still in effect.