• 79°

Gov. Ivey and Superintendent Dr. Mackey give Ala. school system update

Alabama schools will not resume in-person classes for the remainder of the school year.

The decision came late Thurs. afternoon during a press conference with Gov. Kay Ivey, Alabama State Superintendent Dr. Eric Mackey, and Alabama Department of Public Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris.

“Starting April 6, we plan to provide instruction from home for the remainder of the school year,” Ivey said.

With the rise of cases throughout the state, Gov. Ivey considered the closure necessary to combat the novel coronavirus. “We had hoped that we were taking these precautions; however, the virus continues to spread,” Ivey explained.

Earlier today, Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth called for Alabama schools to be closed for the remainder of the year. Fully supporting the decision to close earlier this past month, Ainsworth considered COVID-19 a serious situation calling for “serious measures.”

In response to the decision, Dr. Mackey said, “We appreciate you being patient with us over the last several days. This health crisis we face is unprecedented in our time. The health and safety of our students are paramount and it must remain first priority.”

Dr. Mackey said that the state board plans to work closely with local superintendents and school boards to ensure the best educational plan for the remaining weeks. “We are very fortunate, this school closure came during a time where most of these schools had spring breaks scheduled. Most students have only missed 7 days of instruction,” Mackey said.

Extracurricular activities will be halted for the semester. Dr. Mackey shared, “Unfortunately for sports and band it means the end for this semester. We will be declaring the end of this school year as June 5.”

Currently there are 506 reported cases of COVID-19 in the state with one recorded death. According to the ADPH, 4,082 tests have been administered. Updates can be accessed at alpublichealth.com. There are no confirmed cases in Escambia County at this time.