EXECUTIVE ORDER: NC public schools closed through May 15, gyms and salons must close

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Gov. Roy Cooper provides an update on the coronavirus on March 12, 2020 (Photo: WTVD)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Governor Roy Cooper announced he will sign an executive order that closes grades K-12 for in-person instruction until May 15.

Cooper said he’s asked the State Board of Education, in collaboration with the Department of Public Instruction and legislators, to develop a plan that strives to educate students through the remainder of the school year, which includes remote learning.

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He said he’s also working on a plan to lay out how to make sure school employees work safely and get paid.

Cooper said they arrived at the May 15th date by looking at CDC and public health guidance.

“This is a rapidly evolving health crisis,” Cooper said. “If guidance changes, we will adjust the order.”



During the news conference, Cooper said the executive order also takes another step. It will force certain businesses to close by 5 p.m. on Wednesday. They include:

  • Bingo Parlors, including Bingo sites operated by charitable organizations
  • Bowling Alleys
  • Indoor Exercise Facilities (e.g. gyms, yoga studios, martial arts facilities, indoor trampoline and rock-climbing facilities)
  • Health Clubs
  • Indoor Pools
  • Live Performance Venues
  • Movie Theaters
  • Skating Rinks
  • Spas
  • Sweepstakes Lounges
  • Video game arcades
  • Barber Shops
  • Beauty Salons (including waxing and hair removal centers)
  • Hair Salons
  • Nail Salons/Manicure/Pedicure Providers
  • Massage Parlors
  • Tattoo Parlors

“I know these actions cause heartache for a lot of people but they are necessary to save lives,” Gov. Cooper said.

Grocery stores and restaurants providing takeout and delivery will remain open. Additionally, Governor Cooper reminded North Carolinians to show restraint in buying groceries and supplies.

“I know today’s orders cause hardship for a lot of people. I do not treat these decisions lightly,” added Governor Cooper. “We have made them in the interest of health and safety.”

As of Monday morning, 297 coronavirus cases were found in 45 counties in the state. 10,000 tests are still waiting to be run.