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Walz announces Minnesota schools will not reopen this academic year

WDIO-TV
Updated: April 24, 2020 12:33 PM

Gov. Tim Walz announced Thursday afternoon that Minnesota schools will not reopen for the rest of the 2019-20 academic year. 

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The governor originally ordered schools to close on March 18. When Walz extended the state's 'stay at home' order, school closures were also extended to May 4. Now, students will continue distance learning through the end of the school year. 

Education Minnesota, the teachers' union, supported the decision. 

"We will always regret missing our seniors walk across the stage at graduation and not being able to say goodbye to our students face-to-face at the end of the year," Education Minnesota President Denise Specht said in a press release. "However, the governor made the right decision for the wellbeing of our students, their families and Minnesota educators."

Gov. Walz said state officials will go into more detail about what their expectations are for Minnesota educators and students on Friday. 

He thanked students for their sacrifices and encouraged this year's senior class. 

"You will be forever the Class of 2020," Walz said. "You will not be defined by staying home and missing proms and missing graduations. You will be defined by understanding how interconnected our world is and what it means to come together to try and solve hard problems." 

On Wednesday, he announced the state now has the capacity to test up to 20,000 people for COVID-19 per day. 

However, Walz cautioned Thursday that "there is no silver bullet." He said it will take time to build up the immunity against the disease. 

You can see the governor's slideshow presentation here

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