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School Official: We’re Prepared For Coronavirus

Schools Superintendent John Ravally wrote district parents about steps the schools are taking to combat Coronavirus.

The school district is prepared in case it has to deal with an outbreak of the Coronavirus in Franklin, including moving students out of schools that need “elaborate disinfection,” the schools Superintendent said.

Schools Superintendent John Ravally laid out the district’s plans in a February 27 letter to parents.

Other preventive efforts include instructing the maintenance staff to follow “rigorous cleaning guidelines that include wiping desks and other surfaces with disinfectant on a regular basis,” Ravally wrote. “Our Buildings & Grounds Department has increased its reserve of disinfectant supplies, and we are supplying our nursing staff with additional supplies as well.”

“We have protocols to limit exposure to those who are ill and are working with our School Physician to implement any additional measures he believes necessary in this situation,” he wrote.

The district is also closely monitoring reports of respiratory illness among staff and students, and shares information with the Somerset County Board of Health concerning anyone who has traveled from China in recent weeks, he wrote.

“Our district has emergency plans in place that cover a variety of crisis situations,” Ravally wrote. “Should the spread of this virus affect our district in a more direct way, and we are forced to provide an alternative site for instruction while more elaborate disinfection is required, we are prepared and will work with our State and County Health departments to implement these plans.”

Ravally wrote that while state guidelines prohibit using distance learning in case schools have to be closed for a long time, “we have begun discussion about ways to leverage technology in order to help students keep pace with their studies, in the event of a districtwide, long-term closure.”

Ravally wrote that there are a number of ways to help protect yourself from catching the virus, including “keeping your child home from school if they are sick; doing so will help prevent others from catching their illness; encourage your child to avoid touching his or her eyes, nose, or mouth, as germs spread this way; remind your child to cover coughs and sneezes, using a tissue if one is available and then disposing of the tissue carefully; if a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow; urge your child to wash his/her hands often, for at least 20 seconds, under clean, running water, as this can help prevent the spread of germs; and, finally, clean and disinfect surfaces or objects at home.”

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