CDC Urges Schools to Create Coronavirus Contigency PlansPress Release
ABILENE, TX – As the world continues to vigilantly monitor the spread of the Coronavirus, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is advising school districts to prepare for potential closures.
According to KTXS, the director for the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the CDC urges schools need to have a contingency plan.
In Texas, there are currently six confirmed cases of coronavirus and they are all quarantined at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. Five of the six cases are from passengers from the Diamond Princess cruise ship quarantined in Japan. Earlier this month the U.S. government coordinated the evacuation of 340 Americans who were aboard the ship. The sixth case involves an American evacuee who arrived in San Antonio from Wuhan, China.
"Options include dividing students into smaller groups or in a severe pandemic, closing schools and using Internet-based teleschooling to continue education," said Dr. Nancy Messonnier.
Abilene and Wylie ISD have released their contingency plans and Abilene ISD said it is monitoring the situation through the CDC, as well as state and local health services.
“At this time, the immediate risk to the U.S. public remains low,” said Dr. David Young, Superintendent of Abilene ISD in a letter to parents. “Please be assured that the Abilene ISD is working closely with local, state and federal health authorities to monitor the developing situation concerning the COVID-19.” There are currently no confirmed cases of the virus in the Taylor County.
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Contact with infected surfaces or objects. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
There are currently five geographic areas with widespread or sustained community transmission: China, Iran, Italy, Japan, and South Korea.
To prevent the potential spread of the virus the CDC released “Five Steps to Wash Your Hands the Right Way.”
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
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