MADISON, Ohio — More than 250 high school students in the Madison Local School District have been ordered to quarantine after two positive student cases, Superintendent Angela Smith announced Thursday.
Classes at Madison High School are cancelled tomorrow, September 3, 2021. All other buildings are open. Please see the attached community update for complete details. pic.twitter.com/sZLNHQ4Sae— Angela Smith (@SuperASmith) September 2, 2021
Smith said administrators have communicated with those who have been exposed, but since there are over 250 students involved, the district decided to close Madison High School Friday.
“Because we are mass optional district, we had to evaluate who to quarantine and who not to quarantine, Smith said. “Most of the students today who were quarantined had the option to get a test, if the test came back negative, they actually could come back to school Tuesday. “If not, they will be able to come back to school Thursday. All other students not quarantined, come back to school Tuesday."
She continued, "It’s a balancing act, we really want kids to have a normal experience, and we want to keep our doors open. I'm hoping that the impact to staff isn’t what it was last year and that we’re able to keep the buildings open.”
According to the Ohio Department of Health, Lake County has reported 23,105 COVID-19 cases since Jan. 1, 2020. The county has reported 808 hospitalizations and 404 deaths during the same time period.
Ron Graham, commissioner with the Lake County General Health District told News 5 local school districts and health departments are now facing some tough decisions.
“Recent legislative changes really put into the hands of the school district which is challenging for them, Graham said. “There’s only so much we can do as health district, there’s only so much you can do as a school district, so we have to look at some alternatives on how we keep these classrooms running, or we’re going to be shutdown in two weeks or less."
“We really need masks to be worn, or we have to change our quarantine process, and that’s a tough position for everybody.”
Meanhile at Madison schools, teachers were still required to report to school Friday. The football game at Perry Friday still took place. Students who are not in quarantine were able to attend the game.
“As I have shared previously with you, the only way to keep our doors open and students and staff safe based on current recommendations is to have your student wear a mask. I know there is much disagreement on this. I respect the diverse opinions on both sides. But from an educational perspective, in order to keep the focus on teaching and learning, wearing a mask is our best option,” said Smith in a letter to parents.
Late arrival at the middle and high schools will be postponed and will begin on Sept. 21, the district said.
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