KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — On Tuesday, March 24, Gov. Bill Lee recommended during a COVID-19 press conference that all school systems close through April 24.

Knox County Schools among other school systems announced Tuesday night it is set to follow Gov. Lee’s recommendation and remain closed through April 24.

Several other school systems in the state issued announcements they would follow the governor’s recommendations.


Here’s how county school systems, universities and colleges across East Tennessee are reacting as Gov. Bill Lee urges schools to close as soon as possible. See our school closings list for the most up-to-date closing information.

East Tennessee County School Systems:

Athens City Schools: Athens City Manager C. Seth Sumner confirmed Monday evening city schools have closed through March 27. Food is still available to children in need. All courts, including Athens Municipal Court, are closed to in-person proceedings with some exceptions until March 31st. City parks remain open.

Anderson County Schools: Anderson County Schools will be closed until the end of Spring Break (March 27th). On Monday, March 16th, teachers and staff will report at the normal time to begin preparations for alternative education plans for students. Anderson County Schools will also be closing their buildings to all outside organizations and we will be suspending all extracurricular activities.

Blount County Schools: County officials announced Monday all schools will be closed through March 31, 2020. All field trips, all school events, all athletics events and practices will be canceled beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020. The Friends program will cancel operations effective Friday, March 20, 2020. According to The Daily Times, school officials are working to recoup travel expenses after canceling paid school trips to New York and Florida.

Campbell County Public Schools: Campbell County Schools have extended our school closure through Tuesday, March 31. Students will return on Wednesday, April 1, 2020. From March 17-20, the county school nutrition program will offer breakfast and lunch to any local students at any school site with a grab-n-go drive-thru service at the front of each school. Breakfast will start at 10:00 and Lunch will start at 11:00 with service concluding at noon.

Clinton City School: Schools will be closed through April 3. Officials will allow students to check out their Chromebook to take home as an additional way to access online learning platforms. Parents who want to check out their child’s Chromebook can come to school between the hours of 8:00 a.m – 2:45 p.m. on Wednesday, March 18. If you work and are unable to come during the day, please call the front office of your child’s school. Parents will be given a list of current online platforms that we use in CCS as well as some additional free resources that have been made available by quality vendors. Click here to fill out the attached Google Form if you intend to check out your child’s Chromebook on Wednesday.

Cocke County Schools: School officials have yet to release any updates on possible precautions or cancelations and are following all Cocke County Health Department and CDC guidelines.

Grainger County Schools: Grainger County Schools will now be closed through Tuesday, March 31, 2020. Grainger County Schools will be offering FREE lunches to our students that are 18 years and younger while the school system is closed March 17th – March 31st. The lunch will be served in a “drive-thru” environment with School Resource Officers assisting the food service workers. These lunches will be served weekdays from Tuesday, March 17 through Tuesday, March 31, from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM at Grainger High School, Joppa Elementary School, and Washburn School.

TnAchieves has canceled the remainder of its mandatory TN Promise meetings. Students and parents/guardians have been sent a mandatory webinar to retain TN Promise eligibility. The deadline to watch the short webinar is 12:59 p.m. EDT April 3. Click here for more information.

Hamblen County Schools: Hamblen County Schools will be closed through March 31. School officials have canceled all nonessential, in-person meetings after school to help prevent the potential spread. A presentation on the system’s response and preparations was be recorded and posted on the school district’s website,, on Monday, March 16.

Jefferson County Schools:

Knoxville Catholic High School: Superintendent of Catholic Schools Dr. Sedonna Prater sent a letter to students and staff on Monday confirming all of the Catholic schools within the diocese will be closed through April 13. All athletics, extra-curricular, fine arts, fundraising, and other school-related events are suspended.

Knox County Schools: Knox County Schools said Monday schools will remain closed through April 3. The system was already on spring break.

Knox County Schools said Thursday that it was closing schools March 13, “due to the latest public health developments” and to get an early start on cleaning since spring break is next week. On Friday, KCS announced that a scheduled administration of the SAT exam at Bearden High School scheduled on Saturday, March 14, has been canceled.

The school system said the closure includes all school-sponsored and community events through April 3.

Custodial staff began working Friday on the deep-cleaning process at KCS school locations.

Loudon County Schools: Following the Governor’s statement, Loudon County Schools will be closed through April 3, 2020. All athletics and extra-curricular activities at schools will also be canceled. 

Maryville City Schools: Maryville City Schools will be closed for on-campus instruction through April 3. School officials also said starting next week students in all grades will begin online instruction, which will continue until students are allowed to return to school (hopefully by April 6).

McMinn County Schools: Schools will close through March 31, in accordance with Gov. Bill Lee’s statement. McMinn County Schools drive-through meals will be available Tuesday- Friday at Riceville, Niota, And Englewood. Breakfast service will be from 9:00 a.m. – 10:55 a.m. Lunch service will be from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. each day. This service is for any child 18 or younger, the child must be present to pick up food. Please stay in your vehicle for pickup.

Oak Ridge Schools: Oak Ridge schools announced Monday its system will be closed until March 31.

Union County Schools: Union County Public Schools will be closing schools beginning immediately until April 6th as a proactive response to the coronavirus. This closure includes any activity scheduled for any Union County School facility. The school system will be conducting class through distance learning until schools are reopened. Reach out to your school about picking up a Chromebook for students.

Sevier County Schools: Officials with the Sevier County School System said Friday that schools will be closed for the next two weeks. Students will return to school on March 30. “We will keep you informed as more information becomes available about the distribution of educational materials and meals for students during the closure. Teachers and assistants will not report to work until further notice,” a release from the school system said.

Colleges & Universities:

Carson-Newman University: University President Charles A. Fowler announced Friday that the institution would be suspending courses on Monday and Tuesday before moving all lecture courses online Wednesday. The campus community and families could find the latest updates on the Carson-Newman Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information webpage:

Cleveland State Community College: Updates as they are made available, along with useful tools for you to keep on hand, will be found on the COVID-19 Information page on the college’s website. As a college within the Tennessee Board of Regents System, Cleveland State follows the recommendations and guidelines of federal and state agencies

East Tennessee State University: All face-to-face courses will move online March 23 through April 9. Online courses may be extended through the rest of the semester if necessary. Students will not be charged any additional fees for courses impacted by the change. Current online courses will continue as scheduled.

Johnson University: Face-to-face classroom instruction will end Friday, March 13, and will resume Monday, April 13. The following events have been canceled: Dr. Reyes and Dr. Weatherly’s concert, Lunch and Learn with Steve Cuss (March 18), The Stone-Campbell Journal Conference (March 20-21), The Craddock Lectures (April 1), Spring Retreat (April 3-5), The JUFL Empowered to Connect Event (April 3-4) and JUTN Preview Day on April 9. The April 5 senior banquet is postponed and may be rescheduled for a later date. Visit for the latest.

Lincoln Memorial University: LMU transitioned to online classes starting on Monday, March 16, with officials announcing Wednesday that classes will be completed online for the remainder of the semester. Commencement ceremonies were also canceled, LMU officials said Wednesday. Campus events are canceled March 16 to at least March 27. EdD classes will meet as scheduled on Saturday, March 14. Students are requested to stay home and participate in online classes from their primary residence. Visit the university’s coronavirus webpage for more information.

Maryville College: Spring break will be extended one week to give officials more time to assess the situation. Residence halls will remain closed throughout this time period (March 16-27). The time and date for vacating the residence halls for students has been extended to noon Monday, March 16. At this point, college-sponsored events such as concerts, the Academic Awards Ceremony and Commencement will go on as scheduled. All Maryville College-sponsored or affiliated international travel has been suspended until further notice. Visit the Maryville College coronavirus information page by clicking here.

Pellissippi State Community College: PSCC President L. Anthony Wise Jr. announced Thursday, March 19 that it is in the best interest of Pellissippi State Community College faculty, staff and students to move classes and student services online for the remainder of the spring semester, with very few exceptions. Also, all college events through May 11 have been canceled, effective immediately. Spring commencement and the Nursing pinning ceremony, originally planned for May 10, will be postponed until a later date, but will be held in person when it is safe to do so.

Roane State Community Colleges: All classes that can migrate online as of March 23 will continue to do so, the college announced this week. Those classes will now continue in an online format for the rest of the spring semester, which may be extended if needed. For any courses that cannot be completed online, students will be receiving information from their instructors explaining how to proceed. Officials also announced the postponement of spring commencement, “in accordance with health recommendations to avoid public gatherings over the next several weeks. We know how important it is to recognize the many wonderful achievements of our students so alternative arrangements will be made for commencement. Details will be finalized and announced at a later date.” Visit for more information.

University of Tennessee: All in-person classes will be temporarily suspended beginning March 23 at UT-Knoxville, UT Chattanooga, UT Martin and the UT Health Science Center. UT-Knoxville and UT Martin will suspend in-person classes from March 23 until April 3. Students are expected to stay home after spring break and participate in online classes from their primary residence. UT Chattanooga will suspend in-person classes until March 30. UTC students were scheduled to return from their spring break March 16. All non-athletic university events, including those hosted by registered student organizations, will be canceled from March 16 and through April 5. Any student, faculty, or staff who goes on any cruise — no matter the location or itinerary — or travels to an area listed as Level 2 or 3 on the CDC’s COVID-19 travel advisories page must self-isolate for two weeks upon their return home. Click here for more information.

Tusculum University: Classes at all three locations to online teaching, effective Monday, March 16. The following people should not return to our three campuses after spring break: those who believe they have been exposed to a confirmed or suspected case of coronavirus, those who have been on a cruise and those who have traveled internationally. Click here for more information.

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Walters State Community College: All face-to-face classes to online instruction effective Monday, March 16. All instruction will continue online through March 22. All college events scheduled for the week of March 16-22 are canceled. Click here to visit Walters State’s coronavirus information webpage.

Middle Tennessee State University: Effective Monday, March 23, MTSU will implement a plan for the majority of its classified and administrative employees to work remotely. As previously announced, the university will begin remote delivery of instruction on Monday as well.