Schools across Florida will remain closed for the remainder of the school year, according to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
During a news conference on Saturday, the governor said K-12 schools across the state would continue to practice distance learning for the duration of the school year.
DeSantis said it was a fairly easy decision since the prospect of reopening for just a few weeks in May offered little academic benefit.
“We looked at the clock, we looked to see what it would look like,” DeSantis said. “We’ve got pretty good momentum with distance learning. It’s not the ideal situation, but given where we are in the school year, we felt that was the best decision.”
DeSantis said he understands the social impacts of kids not being able to see friends. He said he plans to ease some restrictions in the next phase so that “kids will have a little bit more to be able to do,” but he didn’t elaborate on what that would look like or when it might happen.
The announcement came just one day after the archdiocese of Miami notified parents that distance learning would take place until the end of the 2019-2020 school year.
"We have heard from parents, principals, and teachers on the 'new normal' which requires all of us to plan, review, and adjust," Superintendent Kim Pryzbylski wrote in a letter to parents.
Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho echoed the announcement in a tweet.
On Wednesday, Carvalho said it would be "imprudent" to have students physically return to campuses by the end of the school year with the state still in the midst of the pandemic.