Coronavirus update: Central Florida schools won’t resume in-person classes until May 1

Students start distance learning

ORLANDO, Fla. – Students across Central Florida will continue distance learning rather than in-person classes until at least May 1 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

On March 13, Florida Commissioner of Education Richard Corcoran made the announcement that students would take an additional week off after spring break. In the same announcement, he said it wouldn’t be until at least mid-April that students would return to their schools.

[RELATED: Here’s how Central Florida schools plan to tackle distance learning during the coronavirus outbreak | Students worry about what possible remote learning will look like in light of COVID-19]

On Monday, local school districts started reporting that the Department of Education ordered campuses to remain shuttered until May 1. Officials from Brevard, Flagler, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter and Volusia public school systems have announced the extended closure on social media.

The Department of Education confirmed on Tuesday that the extended closure applies to every school in Florida.

The decision came on the same day students across Central Florida started distance learning from home.

In Orange County, education leaders asked for patience as students experienced technical difficulties and other challenges.

Classrooms across the country remain empty as health officials ask the public to practice social distancing by staying six feet from one another and avoid mass gatherings of 10 people or more.

Florida now has more than 5,700 cases of COVID-19, making it one of the worst states in the country, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To keep up with the latest news on the pandemic, subscribe to News 6′s coronavirus newsletter or go to