Gov. Lamont orders all public schools in Connecticut to close by end of Monday

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Gov. Ned Lamont issued an executive order Sunday night to close the state's public schools by the end of Monday as the total cases of coronavirus in Connecticut rises to 26.

The schools are ordered closed through the end of the month. Many schools made the decision to close for two weeks before Lamont's announcement.

Students who get meals through school lunch programs will be able to receive meals while classes are canceled. The state got a waiver for children to take those meals home.

Lamont says the state Department of Education is trying to get free online education modules for everyone, with his administration working with Internet providers to make sure everyone has access.

"We're going to get through this by working together, through making sure that we have all the social distancing we need," Gov. Lamont said. "I know it's easy not to take this as seriously as you could, or fear we're overreacting, but I want you to err on the side of an abundance of caution."

He added the state is working on expanding its testing abilities, and is encouraging anyone who is able to work from home, to do so, especially state employees.

He filed a disaster declaration with the Small Business Administration, hoping to help local businesses and nonprofits.

As for students, there are mixed feelings on the closure.

"I was really excited to begin with because having off from school is kind of exciting," said Amanda Hall, a high school senior in New Canaan. "But thinking forward I became kind of upset because this is senior year, and there are so many fun things about senior year."

Her senior year is now online where she chats with her teachers on discussion threads.

Hall said she's happy to have access to learning, but worries it will last longer than two weeks. However, she also believes she's where she is supposed to be right now -- at home.

MORE: LIVE BLOG - Coronavirus updates from the tri-state area and beyond 

PHOTOS: The impact of coronavirus around the world



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