Baker: Schools closed until May 4

  • Pedestrian traffic is light outside Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Saturday, March, 14, 2020. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer) Michael Dwyer

  • FILE - In this May 30, 2013, file photo, James Taylor performs at the Boston Strong Concert: An Evening of Support and Celebration, in Boston. Taylor and his wife donated $1 million to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston to support the fight against the spread of the coronavirus. The gift announced Wednesday, March 25, 2020, will support the hospital's Emergency Response Fund, established in response to the Boston Marathon bombing to provide flexible resources that can be deployed... Bizuayehu Tesfaye

  • A passerby walks along a nearly empty street in the Downtown Crossing neighborhood of Boston, Tuesday, March 24, 2020. Many people are working from home in the state while many businesses have closed indefinitely out of concern about the spread of the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Steven Senne) Steven Senne

  • A pedestrian strolls past a fashionable boutique in the North End neighborhood of Boston, Tuesday, March 24, 2020. Mass. Gov. Charlie Baker ordered all nonessential businesses to close by Tuesday afternoon, and remain closed until at least April 7 in an effort to slow down the spread of the new coronavirus (AP Photo/Steven Senne) Steven Senne

  • A passer-by walks a nearly empty sidewalk near the Old State House, center, in downtown Boston, Tuesday, March 24, 2020. Many people are working from home in the state, while many businesses have closed indefinitely out of concern about the spread of the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Steven Senne) Steven Senne

Published: 3/25/2020 4:38:36 PM

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Charlie Baker is ordering schools and nonemergency child care programs in Massachusetts to remain closed through the end of April as the state works to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The closure extends one week beyond scheduled spring vacation week on most school calendars.

Baker had earlier ordered schools to close through April 6, but said the extended closure until May 4 will let schools provide the best possible opportunities for remote learning for all students while protecting their health.

Baker also issued an order giving supermarkets more guidance on how to protect workers and employees, including instructions on how to maintain social distancing in the sometimes crowded markets.

Deaths

The number of people in Massachusetts who have died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, reached 15 on Wednesday.

Public health officials said the number of residents who have so far tested positive for the disease jumped to more than 1,800 as the state ramped up its testing capacity. Nearly 19,800 have been tested and 103 have been hospitalized since the start of the outbreak.

Moulton quarantines

U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton said Wednesday he has decided to self-quarantine after experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.

Moulton, a 41-year-old Democrat and former presidential hopeful from Massachusetts, said in a statement Wednesday that he began feeling unwell Thursday, with a low grade fever and a tightness in his chest he’d never felt before. Moulton said he also had a sore throat, though no serious cough, along with body aches and unusual fatigue.

His wife had similar symptoms, he said.

Well before experiencing the symptoms, Moulton said, he instructed staff members in his offices in Salem and Washington to work from home, except for two essential workers.

As aide to Moulton said the last contact Moulton had with staff members, constituents and lawmakers was 14 days ago.

The House’s attending physician told him during a phone call that because the symptoms are minor and a test would not change his treatment, he and his wife don’t qualify for tests, he said.

James Taylor gives to hospital

James Taylor and his wife, Kim, have donated $1 million to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston to support the fight against the spread of the coronavirus.

The gift announced Tuesday will support the hospital’s Emergency Response Fund, established in response to the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013.

The money will help the hospital direct resources where the need is greatest, whether for purchasing supplies and equipment, repurposing space, or furthering research, the hospital said in a statement.

Taylor, 72, has deep ties to the hospital. His father, Dr. Isaac Taylor, completed his residency in internal medicine, served as chief resident and conducted research there. James Taylor was born there in 1948.

Kim Taylor has served on the board of the MassGeneral Hospital for Children for the past five years.

“Kim and I want to be part of this fight.,” James Taylor, who lives in the Berkshire Mountains in western Massachusetts, said in a statement.

Hospital President Dr. Peter Slavin called the gift a morale boost.

No Boston lockdown — yet

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said Wednesday that he’s not planning to issue a shelter-in-place order for the city — but that he’s also not ruling it out.

The city has hired the McChrystal Group, an advisory firm founded by former Gen. Stanley McChrystal, to help the city navigate the COVID-19 crisis. Walsh said the firm has been preparing Boston for potentially shutting down the city if needed.

Walsh also said he has put together a list of potential overflow sites for hospitals, medical personnel and the city’s homeless population.

“Unfortunately we’re going to have to build it,” Walsh said. “Hopefully we’ll never have to use it.”

Plastic bags OK

Some Massachusetts communities, including Boston and Cambridge, have lifted their bans on plastic shopping bags.

There has been concern about reusable bags spreading the virus that causes the disease COVID-19.


Please support the Daily Hampshire Gazette’s COVID-19 coverage

Thank you for your support of the Gazette.




Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061
413-584-5000

 

Copyright © 2019 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy