All of New Jersey's public and private schools, along with colleges and universities, will close indefinitely starting Wednesday, Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy said in a tweet Monday.
The order doesn't include day cares, Murphy said.
Murphy gave no timetable for when schools, colleges and universities will reopen. By Monday, many school districts had already decided to close entirely or turn to cyber learning.
The announcement came after Murphy, along with his fellow governors in New York and Connecticut, announced the closures of all casinos, movie theaters and gyms in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19.
During a Tuesday afternoon news conference, New Jersey health officials announced that positive COVID-19 cases in New Jersey jumped to 178 Monday, up from 98 cases Sunday.
For most people, the virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.
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The vast majority of people recover. According to the World Health Organization, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks, while those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover.