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School staffers handed out packets, items to parents and students last week to prepare for the first phase of the new process. 

Iredell-Statesville Schools and Mooresville Graded School District plan to continue educating students in new ways after an extension to the closure of public schools.

North Carolina public schools, kindergarten through 12th grade, will cease in-person instruction until May 15, Gov. Roy Cooper announced in a news conference Monday.

“I know this is extremely difficult for you and your children,” Cooper said. “This is what we need to do to help slow the spread of the virus.”

Jada Jonas, Iredell-Statesville Schools communications specialist, said that I-SS is putting students first in their compliance with Cooper’s executive order.

“It is a consensus with our state leaders as well as in Iredell-Statesville Schools to continue to put our students first and mitigate the impact that this prolonged closure may have on our students,” Jonas said.

“Parents and guardians are reminded that our digital learning format remains in place for all students in grades sixth through 12th. Our elementary students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade should have learning modules that have been sent either electronically or available for pick-up at your school.”

Jonas asked that parents encourage students to access the material, and to contact one’s school principal or teacher by email if any assistance is needed.

“In the days ahead, the district will be deploying additional remote learning strategies and lessons to comply with Gov. Cooper’s order,” Jonas said.

Tanae McLean, chief communications officer with Mooresville Graded School District, said the governor’s decision was expected.

“We were not surprised by the governor’s announcement and are prepared to deliver educational services to our students as long as needed,” McLean said.

“We are proud of the resiliency of all of our staff and students as we continue our learning efforts through the constant changes we are facing during this time.”

MGSD began its online remote learning program Monday, McLean said.

Cooper said that the state decided on the May 15 date based on the information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health guidance. He said that date could be extended in the future.

“This is a rapidly evolving health crisis and if the guidance changes, we will adjust the order,” Cooper said.

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