PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – The Arizona Legislature has passed a bill that will allow students to finish the year at home if the coronavirus forces schools to stay closed beyond the initial two-week period that was mandated by the Arizona Department of Education. Gov. Doug Ducey has yet to sign the bill.

Latest Arizona coronavirus news: Updates from Arizona's Family newsroom

There are two plans on the table. One addresses what could happen if schools are able to reopen by March 30, the other lays out options if they stay closed longer.

Some Arizona school districts have already started giving online assignments. If schools have to remain closed, the bill would require all school to offer alternative learning options like online classes to lets kids finish the school year. Some schools are already preparing to be closed for the rest of the academic year.

With all the uncertainty, some students are concerned about what might happen and what it could mean for their futures.

“How am I going to graduate?” wondered Zach Evahnenko, a senior at Campo Verde High School. “Will I get a diploma. Will there be a ceremony? I think a lot of us are confused. Like, when are we going back are we still going to school? Is everything going to be canceled? ... I think a lot of it is confusion.”

There are concerns about funds and whether all of Arizona’s school districts are equipped to offer distance learning.

GOP-led Arizona House
Members of the Arizona House recite the Pledge of Allegiance before the start of an unusual floor session devoid of members of the public in Phoenix, on Thursday, March 19, 2020. 

Lawmakers have adjourned until Monday. Although they did pass this bill, they did not approve a multi-million dollar budget package designed to prevent foreclosures and evictions and help small businesses weather the coronavirus crisis. While the Senate passed a measure, the House did not.

 

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