Debate rages over whether L.A. Unified should close its 860 campuses in response to pandemic

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Students walk onto campus at Rudecinda Sepulveda Dodson Middle School in Rancho Palos Verdes in this undated photo. (Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

Students walk onto campus at Rudecinda Sepulveda Dodson Middle School in Rancho Palos Verdes in this undated photo. (Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

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On Facebook and group chats, the rumors are spreading.

With more cases of the novel coronavirus being confirmed daily, will L.A. Unified School District close its 860-some campuses this week or next week, or not at all? Should it follow in the footsteps of the universities that are rapidly moving to online learning or the K-12 districts in Northern California and across the country that have shuttered as they have confirmed their first cases of the virus?

The answer, as of 1:30 p.m. Thursday, was no. Despite mounting cries on Thursday afternoon for LAUSD to close, officials said it would not.

While schools are engaging in contingency planning that includes granting the superintendent broad emergency powerscanceling large events and planning for lessons delivered on TV, public health and school officials said they planned to keep schools open unless a confirmed case reached a campus.

Read the full time story on LATimes.com.

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