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Novel Coronavirus


The California Department of Education (CDE) is monitoring the situation regarding the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, also referred to as COVID-19, and is working closely with agency partners to determine best practices for optimal preparation.

For information on the Coronavirus, please refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Coronavirus Disease 2019 web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab. and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Immunization Branch web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab..

The CDPH Coronavirus K12 School Guidance web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab. (PDF).

Schools are highly encouraged to be prepared for, and to have emergency plans in place, in the case of an outbreak. In order to guide local education agencies (LEA), the CDPH has provided the enclosed guidance, issued on February 7, 2020, and titled 2019 Novel Coronavirus Guidance for Schools and School Districts. The CDPH strongly encourages all LEAs to follow this guidance.

The CDC has provided pandemic flu checklists for K-12 school administrators, childcare program administrators, and event planners. These helpful resources can be found on the CDC’s Nonpharmaceutical Interventions web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab.. The CDC has also provided the enclosed guidance, issued April 2017 and titled Get Your School Ready for Pandemic FluExternal link opens in new window or tab. (PDF).

LEAs should communicate with families and communities regarding learning support and guidance on preventing infection from this virus. Further information for assisting LEAs with crisis planning and crisis response can be found on the CDE Crisis Response web page.

Exceptional emergency situations or man-made disasters, such as human pandemic, may affect the ability of schools, institutions, and sponsors to continue normal program operations. Under these circumstances, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) may approve flexibilities to accommodate the needs of severely affected areas. Flexibilities are provided on a case-by-case basis and will require justification from the requesting state agency. Changes to program operation or administration must be approved by the USDA FNS prior to implementation.

Any decisions to close schools as a result of the Coronavirus would be made by individual LEAs and its respective county health agencies. Guidance on school closures can be found on the CDE School Closure Considerations web page.

EdSource has provided the following information for California Schools:

Coronavirus Q&A: What California parents and students should know about COVID-19 web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab.

California schools prepare for Coronavirus outbreak as threat grows web pageExternal link opens in new window or tab.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact the following offices:

School Nutrition Programs (SNP)
  • Steve Yokoi, Northern SNP Unit Manager, by phone at 916-322-5117 or by email at syokoi@cde.ca.gov.
Summer Meal Programs
  • Jeannine Cook, Summer Meals Unit Manager, by phone at 916-322-2146 or by email at jcook@cde.ca.gov.
Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
  • Joseph Cormack, CACFP Unit Manager, by phone at 916-324-7133 or by email at jcormack@cde.ca.gov.
Food Distribution Program
  • Augie Aguilar, Food Administration Unit Manager, by phone at 916-445-4850 or by email at aaguilar@cde.ca.gov.
Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Friday, March 6, 2020
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