Students to continue distance learning through end of school year, DeSantis says

'There were some differing opinions,' governor admits
Gov. Ron DeSantis says schools will be closed through end of year
Posted at 4:27 PM, Apr 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-18 20:00:54-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Saturday that all students in Florida will continue their education via distance learning through the end of the school year.

The governor called it a fairly easy decision since the likelihood of reopening for just a few weeks in May offered little academic benefit.

"There were some differing opinions," DeSantis admitted during a news conference in Tallahassee.

But, ultimately, DeSantis said there was "pretty good momentum for distance learning" amid the coronavirus pandemic.

DeSantis said he understands the social impacts of children not being able to see friends. He said he plans to ease some restrictions in the next phase so that "kids will have a little bit more to be able to do," but he didn't elaborate on what that would look like or when it might happen.

"You had kind of a division among folks whether this was a good idea or not," DeSantis said. "And I think the last thing you want to do is, like, force everyone in school and have half the kids not show up because their parents didn't want -- their teachers didn't want -- to do it."

Distance learning will continue for all students in kindergarten through 12th grade.