The coronavirus pandemic has prompted LAUSD officials to close the nation’s second-largest school district beginning Monday in hopes of slowing the outbreak.
The decision to close the Los Angeles Unified School District was made during a closed-door meeting Friday. It was not immediately clear how long the schools will be shut down.
“California has now entered a critical new phase in the fight to stop the spread of the
Covid-19 pandemic,” officials said in statement. “There is evidence the virus is already present in the
communities we serve, and our efforts now must be aimed at preventing its spread. We
believe closing the state’s two largest school districts will make an important
It was held one day after the Los Angeles teachers’ union called on officials to close the schools.
“We expected the district to close schools within L.A. rapidly. And in a very accelerated way. And in a very humane way,” UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl said.
LAUSD is the nations’s second-largest school district, and is the county’s second-largest employer, according to a district information sheet.
It is also responsible for more than 500,000 K-12 students, about 80% of whom rely on the district for free or reduced lunches.
“They’re relying on us for meals, for childcare,” school board member Nick Melvoin told the Times Thursday afternoon.
Superintendent Austin Beutner tweeted a coronavirus update Thursday night, which reminded the public that no known cases of coronavirus have been reported in LAUSD schools.