Local schools keeping an eye on COVID-19 situation, but staying open for now

Western Kenosha County schools are preparing for the possible need to react to an outbreak here of COVID-19 (corornavirus), but are currently planning to stay open according to the school calendar.

While there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Kenosha County, a state of emergency regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus)  was declared Thursday by County Executive Jim Kreuser.

We contacted all school district administrators about the status of their district’s preparation. Here is some of what we heard back:

Salem School — The school is continuing classes but preparing for the possibility of an extended closure. “Any decisions to close due to Coronavirus will be made carefully, recognizing both the importance of student safety, yet also the disparate impact this type of decision will have on student learning. Unless things change dramatically, this decision would likely involve enough notice for students to be able to take home learning
materials with them,” interim district administrator Connie Valenza said. Here is a letter from the district that was sent to Salem families.

Central High School — Said district administrator John Gendron: “I think every school is in a different place as it relates to preparedness, but I am confident that we are ready in the event that we need to shut-down.  I hope it does not come to this, but we will be ready.” In the meantime the district is planning to continue to hold classes. A school trip to Spain has been cancelled and officials will be meeting with parents next week to discuss a band trip to Florida in April. Here’s a letter from the district that was sent to Central families.

Wilmot Union High School — School officials have created a web page to help keep the community informed about the districts’s actions regarding COVID-19. Fifty hand sanitizing stations also have been created in theschool building. Here is a copy of a letter sent to parents of students.

Riverview School — “This situation has evolved very rapidly,” said district administrator Jon Schleusner. District officials are reviewing options and the school will host a meeting with area district administrators (Friday) to discuss protocols and plan next steps. Staff has been working on compiling online resources and means to provide instruction in the event of school closures.

Wheatland Center School –– “The safety of our staff and students is our primary concern and we are looking at all options,” said district administrator Marty McGinley. He sent a communication to staff Wednesday, and parents Thursday letting them know the school is preparing for a potential closure and will be ready if that is recommended by DPI or the health officials. All after school events for next week are being analyzed based on CDC guidance to determine if they will be held. “I will be communicating with my leadership team tomorrow to continue planning and we will be ready for whatever comes next,” McGinley said. Here is the text of a letter sent to the school community.

Bristol School — District administrator David Milz said of Friday’s meeting “I’m sure all options will be discussed. I can tell you early conversations focused on proactive and preventative measures. These are ongoing. With the recent declaration the consideration of the aforementioned closure, rescheduling/extending spring break, etc. become real possibilities.”

Paris School — Here is statement from district administrator Roger Gahart: “At this time, Paris School intends to continue with our school calendar and activities as scheduled, unless directed otherwise by a governmental body who would have the jurisdiction to direct a closure.  While acknowledging that this is a fluid situation, for now, we are business as usual.”

Brighton School — Here is statement from district administrator Matt Eggert said: “Brighton is currently monitoring the situation closely and staying in contact with state and local health departments.  The health and safety of our students, staff, and community is our primary concern.  The Brighton District understands that this is an evolving situation, but we are prepared in the event DPI or the Kenosha Health Department recommends we close school.”


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