DeSoto County Schools holds meeting to discuss school closure issues

DeSoto County Schools holds meeting to discuss school closure issues

DESOTO COUNTY, Miss. (WMC) - Sunday, the Mississippi Department of Health announced their number of coronavirus cases increased to 10.

While none of those cases are in Desoto County, the school board held a special meeting to discuss issues related to the emergency school closing.

Currently, the Centers For Disease Control says eight weeks off from school will help prevent the spread of coronavirus rather than one to two weeks off.

“While we’re in uncharted territory, we want to make sure our employees are taken care of from that stand point, and we want to make sure we did this today to reassure those employees before the week actually began tomorrow,” said DeSoto County Superintendent Cory Uselton.

While classrooms remain empty for the next five days, each school in the district will receive a deep cleaning to eliminate any potential coronavirus contamination.

"That’s going to be something that tomorrow we get to work on to make sure that those highly trafficked areas, that those areas are taken care of and that anything in the classroom, those areas where our students that are in constant contact with, that we’re cleaning those,” said Uselton.

The School District is still working on a plan to feed students who rely on school meals during the extended break.

That plan may include help from the community and will be finalized in the next few days.

"We’ve had two different groups reach out to date, and I’ve talked to both of them about the possibility of community groups helping us getting meals out to students. We’re also working on the logistics of that,” said Uselton.

Superintendent Uselton said this delay may extend for many more weeks to protect the community from the spread of COVID-19.

The situation is evolving and changing quickly and the district is taking a day by day view on their decisions.

"I cannot remember any kind of situation that is not remotely similar to this one. It’s something that school leaders don’t have any training for, as far as a pandemic. We’re all going to work together to make this work and do the best that we can for our students and staff and community,” said Uselton.

Uselton said there will be a conference call Monday with the Mississippi State Superintendent, along with the Mississippi Department of Health.

It’s important to note the CDC says children are much less susceptible to severe symptoms from COVID-19. However, they can be carriers of the virus and spread it to others -- including their elderly family members who are much more susceptible.

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