WMS closes this week due to COVID


Other local entities also impacted by increase in virus cases

By Jennifer Woods - and Ryan Carter



On Sunday evening, Washington Court House City Schools (WCHCS) informed the public that Washington Middle School (WMS) was closed to in-person learning as of Monday due to positive COVID-19 tests — and it will remain closed until Monday, Oct. 19 per officials.

“In the last week we have had three teachers and two students test positive,” explained Leigh Cannon, deputy health commissioner of Fayette County Public Health. “Due to the high volume of quarantined staff and students, they decided to close for one week.”

A post shared to the WCHCS social media page explained, “all students are expected to log on to Canvas during your regularly scheduled classes to receive work from your teacher. Any student who is to be quarantined from the health department will be contacted by 12 noon on Monday, Oct. 12.”

WCHCS Superintendent Dr. Tom Bailey was unable to be reached for comment.

WMS is the second educational building to be closed in recent weeks as Fayette Christian School was closed on Sept. 28 and remains closed at this time.

The decision to close WMS came less than four days after Fayette County was reported as first in the state for high occurrence of new cases in the past two weeks and was moved to a level three (red alert) emergency in the Ohio Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS), which both occurred last Thursday.

Also on Monday, Miami Trace Local Schools reported confirmation of two additional elementary students who tested positive for COVID. This makes a total of five active cases within the district — one staff member at the high school building, one staff member at the elementary building and three elementary students.

“We continue to work closely with the health department officials in following proper procedures. If your child is a close contact from these new cases, you will be contacted directly by the health department,” read a statement from Miami Trace. “As shared with you in the weekend call out to all families, Miami Trace remains committed to our safety protocols and will evaluate plans on a daily basis. Thank you and stay well.”

On Monday, the City of Washington Court House announced that the council meeting scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 14, along with the Economic Strategies and Cooperation and Finance and Personnel meeting scheduled for Oct. 19, were both cancelled.

Carnegie Public Library staff recently announced the library would temporarily close to the public until Fayette County returns to a level two or one emergency. Although the library is closed, curbside service and virtual programs will continue.

Curbside service will run 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday. Library book drops will remain open at both locations, and the library’s free Wi-Fi will remain available during daytime hours.

Items may be requested online through the library’s website (www.cplwcho.org), via the SEO Libraries App, or by calling 740-335-2540. Library staff will deliver items outside the building using appropriate health and safety protocol.

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Other local entities also impacted by increase in virus cases

By Jennifer Woods

and Ryan Carter