Memphis community, school board leaders focus on feeding student, parents amid coronavirus school cancellations

WATCH: Memphis community leaders release the latest on COVID-19

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Memphis community leaders and school officials held a news conference Friday morning to talk about the latest information involving the coronavirus and their strategy in response to the virus’s impact.

State Representative Antonio Parkinson along with school board, church and city council officials said they have been in constant contact with other elected bodies to figure out what’s best for students and community members to decrease the spread of COVID-19.

Two cases have been confirmed in Shelby County and more than 70 people have been quarantined across Tennessee and Mississippi.

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Shelby County School Board Commissioner Stephanie Love says the board’s concern is inconveniencing parents with an additional week added to a previously planned spring break. School board officials are aware some parents may not have the means to feed their children during the extra week out of school.

SCS Superintendent Dr. Joris Ray announced the district closures Thursday. Love says the extra time will be used to ensure each building is cleaned before students returned.

Love says the board is working with all organizations and funding bodies to work on a contingency plan to help feed those students. Emphasizing that the school board does not generate money, Love called for more county, state and even federal assistance to help the parents and students.

“Feeding parents is not the sole responsibility of Shelby County Schools, this is the reason why we’re having this press conference. Because it’s incumbent upon everyone, all of our elected bodies -- the city, the county, the state, and the federal government to come together to say how do we minimize any type of distraction for our parents and for our students," said Love.

It is unclear how much food the school district has at this time, but the board is asking the community to donate in any way they can.

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