TAKING PRECAUTIONS: School district implements plan to prepare for, prevent possible spread of Coronavirus

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Mitchell High School custodian Adam Wheeler sprays down a countertop in one of the school’s bathrooms Thursday, March 5, using the school system’s new electrostatic disinfection device. The device, which cleans surfaces using an electrostatically charged mist, is one of several ways Mitchell County Schools is fighting the spread of Coronavirus. (Cory Spiers/MNJ)




LEDGER – The Mitchell County School District has started the process of preparing for and preventing the spread of Coronavirus. 

Mitchell County Schools Superintendent Chad Calhoun announced earlier this month staff across the county are taking steps to prevent the spread of Coronavirus within local schools.

Mitchell County Schools Central Office staff began discussing prevention measures earlier this year, and school administrators received guidance documents from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in February.

School administrators began implementing individual school plans earlier this month, and custodial staff received updated training about cleaning areas and new supplies. 

“As always, the safety of our students, staff, parents and community is our top priority,” Calhoun said. “Mitchell County Schools has begun the process of preparing for the prevention of an outbreak and mitigation if or when a possible outbreak occurs.”

Local school custodians now have a new device to help with keeping the schools and buses clean – an electrostatic disinfection device.

The gun-like device fires an electrostatically charged mist onto surfaces to aggressively kill germs. The mist, which is produced from refillable chlorine tablets placed into the device, is designed to kill more germs than traditional methods such as dusting and wiping. 

The school system plans to develop a rotation so each of the area schools can use the device while concerns about Coronavirus linger. 

Aside from keeping the schools clean, administrators continue to encourage teachers and students to wash their hands frequently and stay home if they are sick. 

Calhoun said in the event of a local outbreak, the school system will follow the guidelines and recommendations from the CDC and other key health agencies.

“We are mindful to ensure we do not take actions that could cause unnecessary public panic,” Calhoun said. “We are coordinating with and following the recommendations of federal, state and local health agencies with expertise addressing communicable diseases. Please know that we will continue to take every measure to ensure the health and safety of our students.”