By Sharon Bernstein and Dan Whitcomb
SACRAMENTO, Jul 13 (Reuters) – The California governor ordered Monday to slow down the reopening of the state in the face of a dizzying increase in cases of coronavirus, while the state’s two largest districts in education, Los Angeles and San Diego, announced that all learning will only be online when classes resume in a few weeks.
California Governor Gavin Newsom closed bars and banned non-outdoor restaurants from operating statewide, while also deciding to close churches, gyms, and beauty salons in the hardest hit counties.
Newsom made this decision as COVID-19 cases are saturating hospitals in several rural counties and infections are on the rise in Los Angeles and parts of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Los Angeles is the second largest student district in the United States, and together with San Diego they have a combined total of 706,000 students and 88,000 employees.
President Donald Trump, who will seek reelection in November, called for the reopening of education centers across the country for face-to-face learning to take place in the fall.
Her campaign team believes that reopening education is necessary for economic recovery, especially considering parents who work with young children at home.
Florida, Arizona, California and Texas have become the new epicenters of the pandemic in the United States. Infections have increased rapidly in about 40 of the country’s 50 states in the past two weeks, according to a Reuters analysis.
Despite the nearly 28,000 new cases of COVID-19 in the past two days, Florida has not announced new measures, such as a statewide mandatory wearing of masks, and Disney World in Orlando remains open.
(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento, Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles, Rich McKay in Atlanta, Lisa Lambert and Doina Chiacu in Washington, and Nathan Layne in Wilton, Connecticut. Written by Lisa Shumaker. Edited in Spanish by Rodrigo Charme)