Schools to stay closed; 100 new cases, 11 deaths: Beshear

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Gov. Andy Beshear has asked schools superintendents across the state to keep schools closed until at least May 1.

He reported 11 deaths, the most in one day.

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“This virus is real, it’s real, it is very real, the hold it can take on people. It’s why we keep asking you to make sacrifices, businesses to shut down,” he said flatly.

He also has banned camping at state parks, has started the release of inmates, issued a plea for glove donations, and announced work on an emergency hospital center at the state fairgrounds in Louisville.

Beshear also revised the state number of cases down to 670 from the previous 680 as the state found duplicates and people from other states.

He announced 100 news cases, bringing the total to 770.

Of the new cases, the numbers included 28 in Jefferson, four in Fayette, and one each in Boyle, Menifee, Pulaski, Lincoln, Clark, Bath, Madison, Pulaski, Woodford, and Montgomery.

The 11 deaths bring to 31 deaths in the state.

“We will be lighting houses up green every night, the color of compassion and renewal because they are going to another place, for the foreseeable future,” he said of the tribute he’s asked communities and individuals to do in honor of coronavirus deaths.

“We must make sure we are as committed as the generous that came before us and that the sacrifice we make will be much less than the generations before,” he said, referring especially to World War II.

He said the state has three cases at the Western State Psychiatric Center. Two of those pateints are in their 80s and are on ventilators. A test result is awaited on a fourth person, the governor said.

As for schools, “we know we are going to need it to at least then,” Beshear said.

He told superintendents they would have a discussion in two weeks about the next step.

“We should have a better feel for numbers by then,” Beshear said.

Local governments also can hire back all retirees if they need them.