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For about a half million school students school is out for the 2019-20 school year.

Today Kansas Governor Laura Kelly announced all school facilities will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

“We know this will place tremendous hardship on our families and staff, and impact the social and emotional well-being of our students,” wrote Shiloh Vincent, assistant superintendent of schools of McPherson USD 418. “We have been working on contingency plans since mid-March, including how we can meet our students’ ongoing learning needs as well as provide healthy and nutritious meals.”

According to Vincent the district will be announcing plans to provide free meals to all children in the community beginning the week of March 23. That announcement should come later this week.

On Wednesday, March 18, 2020 the Kansas State Department of Education will release a Continuous Learning Plan that will provide guidance on how schools can continue to provide students with learning opportunities in the months ahead. This plan may include online learning opportunities, traditional learning packets and, other student/teacher learning experiences.

Beginning March 23rd, district administrators and teachers will work to develop plans for students that meet the Continuous Learning Plan guidelines as provided by KSDE.

The district goal is to have a plan in place on or before April 1st.

“Our staff and board of education are also working on other critical issues, such as what this means for our seniors, how this will affect next school year and what impact this will have on our employees,” Shiloh wrote. “We will provide updates on these issues when information is available.”