Mayor Walsh and Boston Public Schools Superintendent Brenda Cassellius have announced the district-wide closure of all Boston Public Schools for students, effective on Tuesday, March 17. At this time, schools are expected to reopen on Monday, April 27, following April vacation.
Schools will be open for a regular school day on Monday, March 16 to allow the flexibility needed to ensure a smooth transition that will allow for parents to plan, students to gather belongings, and the distribution of any learning materials that are ready for use at home.
This announcement comes after the Eliot School in Boston’s North End closed all three campuses beginning Thursday, March 12 due to a presumptive positive case of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19 in a non-student member of the school community.
The City of Boston reiterated that, at this time, there is no known public health risk facing the Boston Public Schools as a whole. The decision to close schools is being made proactively to mitigate and contain the spread of the virus, and follows the declaration of a national emergency.
Should the situation with coronavirus improve on a faster timeline than expected, Mayor Walsh and Superintendent Cassellius will look into reopening schools before April 27 if that is what is best for Boston’s school communities.
“In collaboration with Mayor Walsh and Health and Human Services Chief Martinez, BPS has been actively developing a plan to support our community during this rapidly changing situation,” said Superintendent Brenda Cassellius. “I am incredibly grateful to our teachers, school leaders, custodians, food service workers, bus drivers, and all the staff at BPS for their commitment to our children.”
The North End’s St. John School is also closed. Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of Boston will be closed for two weeks, at which time officials will consider whether this period should be extended.