Face coverings will now be a requirement within the Greenfield Exempted Village School District, at least until after the break for the Sept. 5-11 Highland County Fair.
The school board met Monday evening when board members and superintendent Quincey Gray discussed the option of mandating masks through Sept. 3 to help not only protect students and staff, but to help ensure that quarantine mandates don’t take kids out of school or deprive them of the Highland County Fair.
Discussion during the school board meeting regarding a short-term mandate of masks had all in favor of it for the purposes of protecting the students and keeping them in school.
Gray reported that as of Monday, there were 17 positive cases within three days in the district and 82 students in quarantine. The high school saw 16 percent absence on Monday. While the district administration has no control over the surge occurring within the county and surrounding area, requiring masks for all for the short term is something all agreed was a way to help stem the spread within the district’s schools.
At this time, student mask exceptions include recess, lunch, while participating in extracurricular activities, during physical education class, while outside, or when given a break by teachers. Also, masks at this time are not required during outdoor events.
Currently, a person who is not wearing a mask or not fully vaccinated is required to quarantine if they are within three feet of a person for 15 minutes or more who is infected with COVID-19.
A district website feature during last school year was a COVID-19 tracker. Gray said that is being reimplemented as a way to help everyone stay informed. It can be found in the drop-down menu under “Our District” on the homepage of the district website. In that same drop-down menu is the district’s COVID-19 plan for the school year.
A parent letter was sent home with students on Tuesday regarding the matter. Additionally, an all-call was made as well as a Final Forms notification.
In other business, in reading the report from joint vocational school delegate Greg Barr, Gray said Laurel Oaks is planning an open house and ribbon-cutting on Sept. 8 to unveil its multi-million dollar renovation and expansion of the campus. Tours will be given from 3:30-5:30 p.m. with the ribbon-cutting at 4:30 p.m.
Gray also discussed her recent attendance at the Highland County Historical Society ceremony for the Highland County Hall of Fame. One of the inductees was Benton Raymond “B.R.” Duckworth, who taught science at McClain High School until 1917 when he left to serve in World War I. He was honorably discharged after six months due to pandemic illness. He returned to McClain to teach, becoming principal in 1923, and serving as superintendent from 1939 until his retirement in 1956. Duckworth lived to be 106 years old.
Also in her report, Gray said the geo-technical survey at the practice field for purposes of development there has been completed and the project is moving forward with the building permit process. It is expected that a public board of zoning appeals meeting is to be held in the near future.
Consent agenda items accepted by the board included: a letter of resignation from Leslie Hatfield, aide; a letter of resignation from Bruce Barnhart, seventh grade football; and a letter of resignation from Evan McGlone, assistant football coach.
Employment recommendations approved by the board were: Margie Trefz, aide; Shyanna Howard, aide; Erin Winland, aide; Brittany Massie, aide; Kyle Bennett, bus driver and Buckskin monitor; Jesse Ponder, bus driver; Brad Calhoun, cafeteria; Tosha Freeze, bus driver; Michael Weaver, bus driver; Rhonda Fent, aide/monitor, clerical, cafeteria; Heather White, aide/monitor, clerical, cafeteria; Jessica Reser, aide/monitor, clerical, cafeteria; Mikel Pritchard, eighth grade girls basketball; Leann Thieman, seventh grade volleyball; Rachael Roman, aide; Kaleigh Easter, eighth grade volleyball; Kaleb Shepherd, soccer assistant; Maria Wilson, volleyball assistant; Robert Bergstrom, football assistant; and Evan McGlone, seventh grade football. A substantial list of substitute teachers was also approved.
The Greenfield Exempted Village School District will meet in regular session next on Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. at Rainsboro Elementary. For information and updates, go to the district website at greenfield.k12.oh.us or go to the district’s Facebook page.
Angela Shepherd is a correspondent for the Greenfield Exempted Village School District.