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More states extend school closures, some until the end of the school year

More states are extending the time their schools will remain closed, some even through the rest of the school year, as the number of novel coronavirus cases continues to rapidly rise in the United States.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced Monday he will close schools in the state for the rest of the academic year, and North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper ordered that state's schools to remain closed through May 15.

The orders come as states step up measures to fight the spread of the virus. Millions of people are under state orders aimed at keeping them home, and by Wednesday, when all measures go into effect that have been announced, 39% of the US population will be under such orders in 12 states.

As of Sunday, schools were closed in 46 states, according to Education Week, affecting at least 54.5 million students.

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly last week was the first in the United States to close a state's schools for the rest of the school year.

California schools are closed indefinitely, and Gov. Gavin Newsom has said it's likely they won't open for the rest of the academic year. Los Angeles United School District on Monday said its schools will remain closed until May 1.

There were more than 40,000 cases of coronavirus across the country as of Monday afternoon, and more than 500 people have died.

Coronavirus Coverage / Health / National-World / Top Stories

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