Gov. Doug Burgum today announced that K-12 schools which were closed this week by executive order will not have to make up the instructional time later this school year.
Burgum on Sunday ordered public and non-public schools to close from March 16-20 to provide time for planning and mitigation of the COVID-19 crisis. The governor said today he will waive all instructional hours scheduled to take place this week, meaning schools do not have to reschedule those hours. This decision will ensure state aid payments to K-12 school districts are not interrupted. The Governor’s Office will not require districts to submit the waiver form (SFN 51826 (03-2020)) for this week’s instructional hours.
“Granting these waivers ensures that districts will be able to pay teachers and hourly employees such as paraprofessionals, bus drivers, custodians, food service and other staff through this weeklong closure,” Burgum said. “It also will give districts the flexibility and financial certainty to include teachers, administrators and other professionals in this week’s emergency planning process.”
The decision to close schools was made in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus and expand our health system’s COVID-19 testing and treatment capacity. It also allows schools to plan for reopening, partial reopening or extended closures that would require alternative delivery of education, special education and nutrition to North Dakota’s roughly 120,000 K-12 students in the event of an extended COVID-19 pandemic. The K-12 school closure status will be reassessed at the end of the week.