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Polk County schools are closed until at least March 31, under Gov. Kate Brown’s orders.

Itemizer-Observer

DALLAS — Natalie Davis and Elisabeth Loft, both Dallas High School students, say they plan to be bored for the next two weeks — at least.

Schools across the state were closed until at least March 31 under Gov. Kate Brown’s orders.

Davis said her newly found spare time may be tough to fill.

“I’m definitely going to get bored,” she said.

“We are supposed to hang out at the house,” said Loft, an exchange student from Denmark.

“That is probably what I will end up doing, that, sleeping and eating,” Davis replied.

“My host family is working on a new house, so we’ll probably be doing that,” Loft said.

Davis and Loft, who are student assistants in DHS’ counseling office, said Friday they weren’t surprised about the closure.

“Well, yesterday, Mr. Spencer was talking about he wanted to keep it going until after spring break, so I was a little bit surprised about that,” Loft said.

She said Denmark was also closing schools and public spaces. The borders were closed on Saturday. She said the country of 5.7 million people has 801 cases of COVID-19 as Friday.

She believes shutting down schools is a good decision.

“Yes. I think it that’s a good way to flatten the curve, as they say,” Loft said.

Davis, a member of the softball program, said the team can’t practice.

“We are encouraged to do practicing on our own time,” she said.

Besides some reading, Davis and Loft said they don’t have much in the way of school work to do, perhaps a product of timing. Students were scheduled for spring break starting March 23.

Loft has a few tests to do, but she found out about the closure too late to prepare for them before students were released. That will have to wait until school resumes.

“I’m just maybe going to treat it like a holiday vacation,” Loft said.

Perrydale School District didn’t wait for the governor’s announcement to vote to close school. The board met Thursday a few hours before Brown’s order was announced that evening. 

“Perrydale School Board and Administration are dedicated to the health safety and education of all our students, family and community,” said Trina Comerford, Perrydale board chairwoman, in an announcement. “We understand the hardships this difficult decision may cause some of our Perrydale families.  The board made this decision with public safety for all as a top priority.  It is our wishes that the services for our students continue to be met, and so we have asked administration to see to those needs during this closure.”

In the announcement, district officials urged parents to keep students engaged in academic activity during the unanticipated break.

“We encourage parents to engage their children in academic based activities, such as reading together and practicing math facts,” the announcement said. “There are many web-based educational programs your children use at school that are accessible at home.”

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