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Area schools release information and protocols about COVID-19

(WBKO)
Published: Mar. 9, 2020 at 4:10 PM CDT
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Warren County, Bowling Green, Metcalfe County, Simpson County, and Hardin County Schools release statements on coronavirus preparations.

Warren County Schools

February 27, 2020

WCPS Community,

In recent days, there has been an increase in concern about the coronavirus (COVID-2019) and its potential impact on communities across the country. Major national media outlets have encouraged families to reach out to their school districts for insight about what to expect should the outbreak reach our community. This is an ambiguous request considering the unprecedented territory we are navigating. Nonetheless, Warren County Public Schools prides itself on providing timely communication to our families, so I would like to update you on our immediate understanding and response to the coronavirus concern. It is important to note that WCPS has not received a single report of coronavirus in our schools. However, our school community can expect prompt notification of any confirmed case in our district.

In addition to continuing our thorough daily sanitizing routines in each building, WCPS will continue our common practices, which are aligned with the recommendations set by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for prevention of any respiratory virus. These include:

Frequent handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

Stay home when sick.

Cough or sneeze into an elbow or use a tissue and place immediately in the trash.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

If a student or staff member shows respiratory symptoms, our school nurses will follow our standard precautions and work with the Barren River District Health Department to further research individual/family travel histories.

Thank you for your continued support of our top priority, ensuring the safety of our students and staff. More information on the coronavirus is available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus

Respectfully,

Rob Clayton


Bowling Green City Schools

COVID-19: WHAT WE KNOW & HOW TO PREVENT IT

The Coronavirus is a type of virus common around the world. The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is new. COVID-19 was first identified in the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province in China, however it has now been detected internationally.

Until more is known from the state’s current epidemiological investigations, the governor advised that closing schools and public gatherings is not recommended. Any local decision to alter plans or close schools (as with any other public health concern) will be based on guidance and input from public health professionals.

What we know about COVID-19:

The virus does not survive well for long periods of time outside of the body.

It is unlikely to be spread through food.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19.

Symptoms may include cough, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, headache, body or muscle aches, fatigue/tiredness, fever.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offer the following proper precautions:

Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before leaving home, on arrival at school/work, after using the restroom, before food preparation, before eating any food (including snacks), and when arriving back at home. If soap is unavailable, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Rub the sanitizer over all the surfaces of your hands, which also takes approximately 20 seconds.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Cover your cough/sneeze with a tissue, throw the tissue in the garbage, and wash your hands. If a tissue is unavailable, cough/sneeze into your flexed elbow.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick.

Who is at risk for COVID-19?

The current risk for COVID-19 to people in Kentucky is very low. Evidence to date indicates those most at risk for becoming ill with COVID-19 are:

Those in close contact with someone with a confirmed COVID-19 infection, including healthcare workers and

Those who have traveled in the past 14 days in countries with ongoing community spread of the virus. The CDC Travel Health Notices website provides a list of countries with sustained COVID-19 transmission.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believe that symptoms appear anywhere from two to 14 days after exposure, which is why many recommendations include a 14-day incubation period to monitor individuals for possible exposure.

For the latest information and prevention updates, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2019 novel coronavirus site or the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services.


Metcalfe County Schools

Metcalfe County Schools Responds to Coronavirus

The Metcalfe County School District continues to monitor the ongoing developments and statewide response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). We are in contact with the local health department and our partners at TJ Regional Health, the employer of our nurses and APRN.

While we don’t anticipate it at this time, should the need arise for an extended closure of schools, district personnel are working on plans that would continue educational services. In the meantime, our custodial staff is working diligently to make sure schools and buses are sanitized multiple times daily. In addition to soap and water, students and staff also have access to wall-mounted hand sanitizers in each school. We encourage all students and community members to practice good hygiene by assuring the following:

· Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

· Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

· Stay home when you are sick.

· Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

· Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

· Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

We appreciate the communication from the Kentucky Department of Education and the governor’s office. All state offices are to be commended for providing current and relevant information to school districts. Additional resources can be found at:

· The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s webpage, which includes guidance on the virus and resources for K-12 schools. · The Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ COVID-19 webpage, which includes information from the CDC and will be updated as information becomes available. · A KDE webpage on COVID-19 that includes information on the virus and links to the sample flu plan and talking points for school nurses from the National Association of School Nurses.

· The COVID-19 state hotline:

We will remain vigilant in our monitoring of the situation and will communicate with parents and other parties as the need arises.


Hardin County Schools

HCS FOLLOWING PROTOCOLS GIVEN BY HEALTH ORGANIZATIONS REGARDING COVID-19

Elizabethtown, KY – As most Kentuckians know by now, there are confirmed cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Hardin County Schools is aware of the concerns of our community and has been following the information and guidance provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), the Kentucky Department of Public Health and the Lincoln Trail District Health Department.

“We are taking universal precautions,” HCS Superintendent Teresa Morgan said. “If there is a reported case in Hardin County we will act accordingly. We have an open line of communication to our friends with the Lincoln Trail District Health Department, Hardin Memorial Health and our school nurse providers, Cumberland Health. We are extremely fortunate to have nurses in our schools and access to nurse practitioners. We must remember that health officials are sharing that school-age children are not as vulnerable to COVID-19 as older adults or those with compromised immune systems..”

Hardin County Schools is:

• Closely monitoring the health and attendance of our students and staff.

• Working to keep surfaces used often in schools and on buses as clean as possible and soap/hand sanitizer containers full.

• Asking school principals to be aware of areas that have been heavily impacted by COVID-19. If field trips to those areas have been planned, there is a possibility that they may be canceled.

• Producing and will soon be sharing a video with students this week that will reinforce proper hand-washing techniques that have been previously discussed with them.

• Receiving assistance from school nurses who will also be working with students to review proper hand-washing procedures.

• Asking custodians, bus drivers and other staff to team together and make extra efforts to clean common areas. Restrooms and learning equipment will also be part of an extra cleaning regiment.

HCS will continue to follow CDC recommendations to prevent the spread of infectious disease:

• Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

• Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Stay home when sick and do not return to school until the individual has been fever-free for at least 24 hours.

• Cough or sneeze into an elbow or use a tissue and place it immediately in the trash.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

• If a student or staff member shows symptoms of illness at school, school nurses will follow standard precautions.

Hardin County Schools encourages families to follow the CDC’s information for travel. The districts requests that parents/guardians and staff notify their school principal if a child or member of their family has been to a country listed on the CDC’s Level 3 Travel Health Notice list and recently returned to the local communities. Out of an abundance of caution, the district requests that these children wait for a 14-day incubation period (beginning the day of return to the U.S.) to expire before enrolling in school or returning to school.


Simpson County Schools

Simpson County Schools shares in your concern about potential problems that could result should we see cases of COVID-19 (the new Coronavirus) in our community. Our foremost goal is always the safety of students and staff. The Simpson County School district is prepared to deal with outbreaks of illness such as the flu and have done so for many years. While COVID-19 is new, we have a plan to utilize similar responses and procedures to address this new concern as we use with the flu. Our maintenance and custodial teams are using procedures that are recommended by health officials and the CDC to prevent the spread of this new virus.

We will continue to closely monitor this event and will take any necessary action as directed by the Simpson County Health Department, Kentucky Department of Public Health, and the Center for Disease Control (CDC). We are in communication with our city and county governments as well. At this time, other than increased efforts to properly clean and disinfect, there is no recommendation for any modification to our normal operating schedule. We will continue to update you with any new information from the school district regarding this issue.

The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. As a reminder, the CDC recommends everyday preventive actions to help stop the spread of respiratory diseases. Please remind your student of these practices which include:

Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Stay home when you are sick.

Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds.

For more information on response to COVID-19, please see the following link from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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