Bus Maricopa High School
Vehicles line up in front of Maricopa High School as classes are dismissed. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The plan to reopen Arizona schools on Aug. 17 is on course, Gov. Doug Ducey said Thursday afternoon.

Amid heightened concerns about a surge of coronavirus in the state, some thought the first day of school might be pushed back again – to September or beyond.

Ducey called the August date aspirational when he announced an executive order on June 29 to delay classes by two weeks.

Ducey said Thursday the reopening of schools would get further discussion next week.

The Republican governor also extended protections to renters who faced eviction due to financial difficulties brought on by the pandemic. The moratorium on evictions was extended until Oct. 31

There were 3,259 new cases of the virus and 58 deaths reported in Arizona on Thursday.

“I know people want clarity around this and we’re going to provide clarity,” Ducey said of the schools reopening plan.

There will be more news coming next week in regards to “additional flexibilities” be provided to school districts around the state.
Even as he encouraged residents to stay home, Ducey said he would feel very comfortable sending a child back to school.
Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, said she and her husband just made a decision to send their children back into schools for in-person classes, and not virtual classes.