Some 5,000 preschoolers and more than 12,000 elementary school students in the Shomron Regional Council will not be going to school until at least after Passover, after the regional council decided to close their schools effective Sunday morning. The move came as some 178 people in Israel have been diagnosed with the potentially lethal coronavirus.
According to Shomron Regional Council head Yossi Dagan, after holding meetings on Friday with local emergency staff and relevant divisional directors, as well as consulting with the Army and the Ministry of Health, a decision was made to close all 167 preschools in the area.
"Stopping the spread of the coronavirus is what matters now," Dagan said. "There is no difference between schools and kindergartens in this respect.”
He urged the prime minister, who on Thursday night called for the shuttering of the Israeli education system - except preschools, kindergartens, special education and kids-at-risk programs - to close preschools across the country.
"We are well aware of the significance of these measures, but in order to ensure the safety of the children we have chosen to exercise extra caution,” Dagan wrote in a letter. “Israel as a whole, and we in particular, are facing an epidemic for the first time. We must act responsibly and with a cool mind. "
Currently, there are around 200 people in home-isolation in the Shomron region and nine people from the area who are hospitalized with coronavirus.In Israel, some 178 people have been diagnosed with the virus, four of whom have recovered, the Ministry of Health reported Saturday.