Coronavirus: Closures, cancellations announced in Clark County

As coronavirus cases rise locally, some Clark County schools and the city of Springfield have announced closures and cancellations.

A total of 866 new cases were reported in Clark County since Jan. 1, according to Clark County Combined Health District. The health district has reported a rise in cases for the past several weeks.

Springfield High School students moved to remote learning Thursday and today due to COVID-19-related staff and student absences. Extracurricular activities have continued as scheduled.

All other Springfield schools will operate as normally scheduled this week.

ExploreOhio enters 2nd week of daily COVID hospitalization records

Clark-Shawnee Schools announced on Thursday that Shawnee Elementary would be closed today due to a staff shortage and lack of substitutes available as COVID-19 cases rise in the community.

Virtual learning wasn’t an option for the school due to the number of staff unable to work, Clark-Shawnee School District superintendent Brian Kuhn said in an email to families, but the elementary school plans to have its students return to school on Monday.

“We will continue to closely monitor staffing levels across the district,” Kuhn said.

The closure only applies to the elementary school, and Shawnee Middle and High School are open today and will operate on their normal schedules, he said.

“Our focus for the 2021-2022 school year has been to keep our students and staff safely learning together and in-person as much as possible,” Kuhn said. “Unfortunately, as the number of COVID cases in our community continues to climb, we have seen the impact of that increase in our schools, including among our staff.”

ExploreSpringfield medics free tow truck driver trapped in crash

District employees will continue to wear masks at school next week, and it is still recommended that students wear a mask to school due to the spread of COVID-19, Kuhn said.

“While I fear this is the first of many hurdles we will face together this winter, we will still continue to do everything we can to meet the needs of our students,” the superintendent said.

This week also saw the cancellation of Springfield’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. Luncheon due to the rise in cases.

The city said that the Community Development Department staff and the MLK luncheon committee members are planning and organizing alternate ways to celebrate local peacemakers, businesses and nonprofits that embody the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream.

Information on alternate efforts will be posted to the city’s Facebook page, the city said.

About the Authors