UPDATE: Murray County Schools closed

Community, Press Release
MC BOE LOGO murray county schools

After announcing Murray County Schools would remain open, the Murray County Board of Education switched courses and made the decision to close the schools until March 27.

Statement released by the Murray County BOE:

Murray County Schools are proactively closing school campuses for all students for a two-week period through Friday March 27, 2020.

 

March 13, 2020

Due to the latest information from Governor Kemp and President Trump concerning the Coronavirus, Murray County Schools are proactively closing school campuses for all students for a period beginning Monday March 16, 2020 through Friday March 27, 2020. Instruction will continue through homebound activities that were shared with all students and parents today Friday March 13th. This measure is to support local and statewide efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Murray County Schools will reassess the situation on Thursday March 26th and determine if additional time is needed beyond this date. Information will be shared through emails, phone calls, the website, and social media.

We will provide a sack lunch and breakfast meal weekdays starting on Tuesday March 17th thru Friday March 27th at 11:30 am at the student drop off points at the following schools: Bagley Middle, Murray High, Spring Place Elementary. In addition to the school locations meals will also be provided at Spring Place Mobile Home Park in the same location as the summer feeding site.

All Athletic practices and games are suspended through March 27th and will be re-evaluated at that time in cooperation with the Georgia High School Association and Middle School Athletic Association.

Murray County Schools join Gordon County, Calhoun City, and Pickens County. Continue checking for more updates.

Previous story

MURRAY COUNTY, Ga – Murray County Schools announced on Friday, March 13 that at this time the school district will remain open.

“School district officials are working closely with local and state health officials to monitor the evolution of Coronavirus. As of now, there are no reported cases of COVID-19 in the schools or community,” read the press release.

However, all athletic and extracurricular activities are canceled effective immediately. Special events and field trips were already canceled. A limited number of within-district activities will continue. The school advises checking the website and app for more details.

If the school does close, the plan is to continue education through home learning and beginning today students will receive books, writing materials, curriculum review materials, and student login information to access additional online learning opportunities.

The district added that it’s dedicated to ensuring the safety and well-being of students, staff, and their families.

Other local school districts keeping an eye on COVID-19

Community, News
COVID-19

Other local school districts, Gordon County, Calhoun, Whitfield County and Dalton, are keeping an eye on COVID-19. Other local school districts like Murray County and Murray counties are also preparing for the worse, but hoping for the best.

“To our knowledge, we don’t have any confirmed cases, or anyone in contact with confirmed cases,” said Amy Parker, Director of Communication and Community Relations.

Dr. Michelle Taylor, superintendent of Calhoun City Schools, said her district also had not known connections to COVID-19, but were following the department of public health.

“We’re encouraging students and staff to stay at home if they are sick and making sure our schools are safe and clean,” Taylor said.

Murray County Schools have two quarantined after contact with infected persons. For details, read our story here.

Most local schools have a contingency plan, but one district, Dalton Public Schools, is already developing online curriculum should the schools decide to close.

Pat Holloway, Chief of Staff for Dalton Public Schools, said there are no cases or quarantines involving staff or students in their district, but they are developing curriculumn for students to access via their devices if needed. The system has about 7,800 students with third grade through 12th grade each having their own devices, either laptops or I-pads. For more information, click here.

Other area schools, including DPS, are following guidelines set forth by the Center for Disease Control to reduce the chance of the virus coming into their schools. The Georgia Department of Health has resources available, including guidelines on how to disinfect surfaces.

As of 4 p.m. Wednesday, the Center for Disease Control reported there were 23 confirmed cases in Georgia.For a complete listing by state, click here.

The see how Pickens County Schools are responding, see our story here.

The virus spread from the Wuhan in China and has 938 confirmed cases in the United States and 29 deaths. A confirmed case in Fulton County schools led to the closure, according to the Georgia Department of Education, but they are not recommending closures for other schools. To read the GADOE statement, click here.

COVID-19 virus is spread person-to-person and symptoms are flu-like or the common cold.

The CDC recommends:

COVID-19 virus

Handwashing poster from the Georgia Department of Health.

Stop handshaking – use other non-contact methods of greeting.

Clean hands at the door and schedule regular hand washing reminders by email.

Create habits and reminders to avoid touching their faces and cover coughs and sneezes.

Disinfect surfaces like doorknobs, tables, desks, and handrails regularly  Increase ventilation by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning.

For other tips, visit here.

The Georgia Department of Health recommends:

Washing hands regularly

Get flu shot

Cover coughs and sneezes

Stay home if symptoms appear until they resolve

 

Read our complete coverage on COVID-19.

 

From Gordon County Schools:

  • March 6, 2020

    Dear Parents/Guardians/Staff:

    We understand that there is a great deal of concern about the spread of the COVID-19 virus, and we wanted to take the opportunity to reassure our families that Gordon County Schools is closely monitoring the situation and is in frequent contact with Department of Public Health officials for updates to ensure we have the latest and most accurate information.

    In the latest information received today from DPH, Governor Kemp reiterated that, “To prevent the spread of incomplete or inaccurate information, we encourage Georgians to rely on guidance from the CDC, the DPH, and my office. We will continue to provide regular updates to keep the public informed and ensure the health and safety of families across our state.”  For the complete DPH release, visit our website.

    As a school system, we continue to take precautions in our schools to help keep our children safe.  Our custodial staff is regularly cleaning and disinfecting work and play areas throughout our facilities, following the suggested protocols from the Department of Public Health.  Our transportation department is also cleaning and disinfecting busses.

    Please continue to implement the following measures to help us combat a breakout in our schools:

    • Stay home from work or school and limit contact with others when you are sick.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and properly discard used tissues. If no tissue is available, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands.
    • Frequently wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Germs spread this way.
    • Avoid close contact with those who are ill.

    Up-to-date health information can be obtained at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

    For more information on Gordon County Schools and COVID-19, visit here.

With the increasing concern of the Coronavirus (a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person) around the globe, Whitfield County Schools would like to remind students, parents, faculty and staff of simple, everyday actions that can be taken to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses. 

1. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. *Parents, please do not bring your child(ren) to school if they are sick.
2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
3. Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand santitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
4. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

As always, the first priority of Whitfield County Schools is the safety and well-being of our students, staff, and their families. Therefore, our school district is closely monitoring the Coronavirus and making the necessary preparations in case the virus becomes more prevalent in our community. In situations like this, we always take our guidance from the medical professionals at our local Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta. At this time, they are telling us that we are at low risk for the spread of the virus. As a system, we are being proactive in the prevention of any spread of the virus. We contract with a cleaning company to clean all facilities every day. They are using cleaning solutions designed to kill the Coronavirus.

We are told that the best prevention at school is to wash hands. Our teachers are diligent to give students opportunities to wash their hands frequently. They are supervising younger children to make sure that they are washing hands thoroughly. Symptoms of the Coronavirus are fever, onset of a cough, and shortness of breath. Symptoms appear 2 to 14 days after exposure, and the average incubation period is reported to be about 5 days. Eighty percent of patients with confirmed Coronavirus have only mild symptoms. If your children have any of these symptoms, please do not send them to school.

At this time the Georgia Department of Public Health has advised us that students who are not ill can safely attend school. The Georgia Department of Education is in regular contact with the Department of Health, and we receive updates almost daily. If their recommendations change, we will certainly let you know.

Should it become necessary to close a school or schools, our Teaching and Learning staff has a plan for continuing the education of our students. Of course, the plan varies with the grade level. Should we need to close, you will receive more specific information. Additional information on continuation of academics would be placed on our Whitfield County Schools website in the event of closure.

Whitfield County Schools is working closely with state health officials to monitor the evolution of the Coronavirus and its potential impact on our community. For more information regarding the Coronavirus, visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Follow Whitfield County Schools here.

From the Georgia Department of Education, click here.

 

COVID-19 virus too close for comfort for Murray County

Health, News

Murray County schools found themselves too close to COVID-19 virus when the father of one of their teachers was diagnosed with the virus.  The Board of Education released a statement telling parents that the teacher and a student in a similar situation are quarantined. Local schools are preparing for COVID-19 amid concerns, fears, and close calls. The spread of COVID-19, also known as coronavirus, is making waves in the school systems.  Schools in Fulton County are closed due to a confirmed case and while there are no confirmed cases, at least two districts have situations warranting a closer look with a couple of staff members and a student in quarantine.

While there are no confirmed cases in Pickens, Murray, Whitfield, and Gordon counties, local schools found they weren’t totally immune to the threat. There have been some close calls and situations that have some schools taking notice.

Pickens County Schools had a brush as a paraprofessional ate at the same Waffle House in Canton as an employee who had the virus. The paraprofessional isn’t showing symptoms but is “self-quarantined” for the incubation period.

Most local schools have a contingency plan, but one district, Dalton Public Schools, is already developing online curriculum should the schools decide to close.

Pat Holloway, Chief of Staff for Dalton Public Schools, said there are no cases or quarantines involving staff or students in their district, but they are developing curriculumn for students to access via their devices if needed. The system has about 7,800 students with third grade through 12th grade each having their own devices, either laptops or I-pads.

Other area schools, including DPS, are following guidelines set forth by the Center for Disease Control to reduce the chance of the virus coming into their schools. The Georgia Department of Health has resources available, including guidelines on how to disinfect surfaces.

As of 4 p.m. Wednesday, the Center for Disease Control reported there were 23 confirmed cases in Georgia.For a complete listing by state, click here.

The virus spread from the Wuhan in China and has 938 confirmed cases in the United States and 29 deaths. A confirmed case in Fulton County schools led to the closure, according to the Georgia Department of Education, but they are not recommending closures for other schools. To read the GADOE statement, click here.

COVID-19 virus is spread person-to-person and symptoms are flu-like or the common cold.

The CDC recommends:

COVID-19 virus

Handwashing poster from the Georgia Department of Health.

Stop handshaking – use other non-contact methods of greeting.

Clean hands at the door and schedule regular hand washing reminders by email.

Create habits and reminders to avoid touching their faces and cover coughs and sneezes.

Disinfect surfaces like doorknobs, tables, desks, and handrails regularly  Increase ventilation by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning.

For other tips, visit here.

The Georgia Department of Health recommends:

Washing hands regularly

Get flu shot

Cover coughs and sneezes

Stay home if symptoms appear until they resolve

Murray County Schools

Murray County Schools released the following statement:

Officials with the Murray School system have today been made aware that one of its teacher’s elderly father, who lives in the Atlanta area, was diagnosed on Monday March 8th with COVID-19. The teacher had visited her father during the weekend of March 1st. The teacher is currently, on the instruction of medical professionals, “quarantined” at her parents’ house in Atlanta. Ten days post-exposure, the teacher is exhibiting no signs of illness, and continues to monitor her temperature at least twice per day. She has been instructed to remain in her parent’s home for 14 days post-exposure, which will end this Saturday. Presumably, if she continues to remain symptom free, she will return to school next week.

In addition, we have, within the past hour, been made aware of a student at Northwest Elementary who while attending an out of town event, came in contact with an individual who had contracted COVID-19. They were also recommended to self-quarantine until March 14th.

In the meanwhile, and for the foreseeable future, we will continue to follow CDC best practices and recommendations from State Superintendent of Schools, Richard Woods.

In addition, our custodians are doubling down on sanitation of school buses, common areas, and frequently touch surfaces.

Read our complete coverage on COVID-19.

For more Murray County news, visit here.

 

Murray County Schools look to replace Windstream

Community, News
MC BOE LOGO murray county schools

The Murray County Board of Education heard support for changing the system’s internet provider to ENA from Windstream. The contract expires in July but the board will vote on the change in their regular meeting on Monday.

“Windstream is not reliable,” said Steve Loughridge, Superintendent of Murray County Schools.

Murray County Board of Education

The Murray County Board of Education discussed switching internet providers at the work session on Thursday.

Loughridge stated that ENA has partnered with Dalton Utilities and is also the service provider for much of the Murray County government, with the exception of a couple of fire stations.

ENA currentlhy does not have service in the area of Northwest Elementary School but Loughridge said ENA officials have assured him that if they win the bid, they will have service to it by July.

He also said that Spectrum’s bid was a little lower, but the school system didn’t have any experience with them.

“We feel ENA is the most reliable,” he reiterated.

New security at schools

The board also heard updates purchases for each school using $30,000 per school that the legislature awarded the district. The money is for improving security at schools, Loughridge said.

Purchases include new radios for the buses, which should improve communication between buses and schools, security cameras in various schools not already equipped with them. Gladden Middle and Pleasant Valley Elementary schools will each get new intercom systems.

“Pleasant Valley doesn’t even have an intercom system,” Loughridge said. “Gladden’s system is old.”

Other schools will have more keyless entry points, he added.

“We’re in pretty good shape, so sometimes, it was a struggle to find something (they would approve the money for),” he said, explaining that proposed purchases had to be approved.

To view more of Loughridge’s comments on the purchases, click here.

In other board news:

A proposition was made to declare some school buses as surplus so they can either be sold through bidding or auctioned off.

Announced a two-hour delay on Friday due to recent storms. To learn more, visit FYN’s story here.

 

 

 

 

 

Murray County Schools CLOSED January 29, 2019

News

Murray County Schools are on CLOSED January 29, 2019.

Murray County Schools on Delay Feb 9th

News

All Murray County schools will be delayed 2 hours on Tuesday morning, 2/9.  If you travel please use caution.

Murray County Schools Closed Jan 20th 2016

News

ALL Murray County Schools will be closed tomorrow, Wednesday January 20th due the impending winter weather that is forecast to have an immediate impact on roads as ground temperatures are already below freezing.

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