Falls Church City Public Schools will close effective this Monday, March 16 and remain so for a month, through the school’s spring break until April 14 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The announcement came as many of the area’s other school systems had announced similar closures in the past 24 hours. According to F.C. School’s tweet, the school system aligned with Arlington Public Schools in the decision to close.
Falls Church’s spring break recess is scheduled for the week of April 6-10 with a professional day set for Monday, April 13.
In a letter to students’ families and staff, F.C. Schools Superintendent Peter Noonan and Arlington County Public Schools Interim Superintendent Cintia Johnson wrote:
“In response to growing concerns and anxiety in our community about the coronavirus (COVID-19), Falls Church City Public Schools and Arlington Public Schools have aligned, and in close collaboration with other Northern Virginia school divisions, will close beginning Monday, March 16, 2020.
“The present plans are to remain closed through Spring Break, with students scheduled to return on April 14, 2020. We will continue to evaluate and monitor the situation on a daily basis and will provide an update on our plans as new information is available.
“Given all the information available now, including other closures throughout the National Capital Region that impact our staff and families, we believe this is the best decision to make at this time.
“All of us, school administrators, staff, and parents, want the same outcome–keeping our kids and community safe.
“Each of our divisions will send additional logistical details of the closure to our staff and families later today. Thank you for your continued understanding and patience.”
In addition to the closures of Falls Church and Arlington, City of Alexandria Public Schools will be closed until April 13, Washington, D.C. Public Schools will be closed until April 1, Loudoun County Public Schools are closed through March 20 and the state of Maryland has closed all public schools until March 27. Fairfax County Public Schools canceled schools on Friday and Monday but have made no announcement beyond then.
On Friday morning, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, who announced a state of emergency Thursday, announced that 29 people in Virginia have tested positive for the coronavirus, an increase of 12 since Thursday.