I will not post any more notices about school closings, because there are so many of them. Every day brings news of another district or city or state that is closing its public schools in response to the coronavirus, in an effort to reduce exposure to the virus. Some of these closures are limited to a few weeks; some are indefinite. In every case, I hope that district officials have given serious thought to supplying meals to children who depend upon them. As reader Chiara pointed out, the closures remind us of how important our schools are in the lives of children–the social interactions, the opportunity to learn, the library, the clubs, the musical groups, the sports, the peer relationships, access to social services, and exchanges with human teachers. Being online just isn’t enough of a substitute for human relationships.

This story appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

Los Angeles school officials on Friday voted to shut down the nation’s second-largest school system effective Monday, citing concerns over the rapid spread of the coronavirus. The district has about 900 campuses serving more than 670,000 children and adult students.

Schools will be closed for two weeks while the situation is evaluated, said L.A. schools Supt. Austin Beutner. There will be 40 centers where students and families can receive services, including meals, starting on Wednesday.

The “family resource centers” will be open weekdays from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will offer childcare and hot meals. The district hopes to have a list of locations soon.

Los Angeles district officials said that they will also offer televised and online lessons in an attempt to help families.

School district employees will continue to be paid, even if not directly involved in working with students.

San Diego Unified School District will also shut down on Monday. Neither district said when schools would reopen.