COVID concerns close Crawford schools
By Stephanie Taylor Ferriell, Senior Staff Writer, [email protected]
Crawford County Community School Corp. moved to virtual learning for all students beginning Sept. 11 due to three positive cases of COVID-19 at the high school.
These are the first positive cases since early in the school year, when there were two cases involving individuals at two separate schools in the corporation. In both of those instances, the situation was handled with individuals quarantining and did not result in the closure of any schools.
“The biggest difference in the first cases and these was transportation, directly and indirectly,” said Michael Key, superintendent of the Crawford County Community School Corp. “This involved three different transportation possibilities and four classrooms. We actually needed time to see how the direct contacts were affected.”
Key said the decision to shift to virtual learning for all students came about after he conferred with the county health department and reported contact tracing.
“It was recommended that we close for two weeks,” said Key. “This took us to the abbreviated week where we already had parent/teacher conferences scheduled for Thursday and Friday, Oct. 1 and 2. These were followed by our fall break. It was decided that we would be best served quarantining until the conclusion of fall break.”
In addition, all sporting events and extracurricular activities have been postponed or canceled until further notice.
Students are scheduled to return to the classroom on Monday, Oct. 12.
With between 30% and 40% of students already choosing virtual learning, Key said teachers were ready to make the switch to all virtual.
“I am confident that learning will continue; we made plans for this,” he said. “Our staff are in the buildings, and we feel that students can be better served when they know their teacher is in the building.”
Families will also once again be provided meals through the corporation as they were during the spring and summer. Key said the meal distribution information and instructions are posted on the school corporation’s website.
“I was greatly disappointed to be left in a position to close,” said Key. “We had gone nearly six weeks without having to shut down any schools. Our students and staff were doing everything we asked them to do in regard to precautionary measures, and I am confident that we will get a handle on this to make a possible attempt at getting our students participating in some school activities.
“It will be our goal to get our students back in the buildings as soon as possible,” he said.