Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has announced that all K-12 public school systems would remain closed for the rest of the school year.

The news came out during a press conference held by Governor Ralph Northam on March 23. He also ordered that all non-essential businesses close temporarily until April 23. Grocery stores, banks, pharmacies, and other essential services will be open during this period.

The governor had this to say about the new measures:

“This is an unprecedented situation, and it requires unprecedented actions to protect public health and save lives. I know the next several weeks will be difficult. These restrictions on non-essential businesses will create hardships on the businesses and employees affected. But they are necessary, and we do not undertake them lightly. I am calling on Virginians to sacrifice now, so that we can get through this together.” — Governor Ralph Northam

The next step will be for the Virginia Department of Education to provide additional information about the logistics of the school closures and additional instructional options.

School systems around the state were quick to put out their own statements after the 2 p.m. press conference.

For more information, check your county's public school system website, Facebook, or Twitter pages. You can also watch the video of the governor's announcement here.

What are your thoughts on this news about Virginia public school closures? Sound off in the comments!