Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is now recommending all Iowa schools close for four weeks, following additional confirmed cases of community spread of COVID-19 in Iowa. Governor Reynolds made the recommendation based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, and after consulting with the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH).

According to a release from the IDPH, "the state of Iowa is developing policies to ensure continued access to child care during this time of emergency, including meals for low-income students."

Governor Reynolds released the video statement below recommending the closing of Iowa schools:

On Sunday, the Iowa Department of Public Health was notified of four more cases of Iowans with coronavirus, bringing the total in the state to 22.

Two of the four cases confirmed today were from Allamakee County in northeast Iowa. Both were related to international travel. One was an adult between 41 and 60 and the other was a child between 0 and 18.

A third case was a middle-aged resident of Johnson County with no travel-related risk identified or exposure to a known case of coronavirus. That person is considered the second case of community spread in the state of Iowa.

The fourth case today is a middle-aged adult in Polk County. That person is the third case of community spread.

Governor Reynolds will be holding a press conference during the day on Monday to discuss the situation further.

Two other notes of interest tonight. Earlier today, Governor Reynolds signed a Proclamation of Disaster Emergency, extending one initially signed on March 9. It allows retailers to stop accepting empty cans and bottles during the length of time the Disaster Emergency is in effect.

This evening, the Centers for Disease Control updated their mass gathering guidance for the next 8 weeks. The CDC now recommends postponing any event of 50 or more people during that time in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. It does not override recommendations of local public health officials.

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