LEES CREEK — District-wide there are 138 East Clinton students now back in the classroom after being on virtual learning first semester.
That’s “a big number,” commented East Clinton Supt. Eric Magee. Consequently the district has had to reassign some teachers and change how some things were being done, especially in the two elementary buildings where last semester one teacher in each grade level was assigned to the virtual classrooms.
While 138 is a big number, about 130 students are doing the virtual learning option now, and that’s a big number too. Of the pupils on virtual learning last semester, about 52 percent returned to their buildings and about 48 percent remained with the virtual option.
COVID vaccinations will soon be rolled out in the field of education in Ohio, noted Magee in his Tuesday report to the school board.
“School personnel are in Phase 1b of the State’s phases; I’m not sure why that’s just not 2,” observed Magee, with humorous effect.
The Clinton County Health Department is prioritizing needs among school personnel, starting with staff who are 65 and older, and will look at some other prioritized areas as well, Magee said.
Given the limited supply of vaccine doses that the health department is receiving, it’s not likely eligible local educators will all be vaccinated at one time. Instead the process is likely to be staggered over several weeks for East Clinton employees, the superintendent added.
The staff was surveyed, and of 133 responses, 71.1 percent indicated they are going to take the vaccine, reported Magee. Some of those who said they won’t take it said that’s because they already had COVID and have to wait 90 days.
Because the State of Ohio has altered quarantine guidelines for schools, there shouldn’t be as many quarantines on the student side as there were prior to Christmas break, commented Magee.
As of Tuesday, four staffers presently are confirmed with the coronavirus, and two students currently are infected. Presently four staffers are in quarantine; likewise with 38 students.
Most of those situations are due to interactions outside of school, said Magee.
The school board meeting was held at the high school. Principal Michael Adams told the board if students are not signing in or completing things under the hybrid scheduling format that combines in-person and online learning, those students are being held accountable through the attendance system.
Adams is concerned that some high school students are, with the onset of online learning, out working a job and/or have “unplugged” from instruction. He thinks they probably would have graduated if they had been in the school building like normal, but it’s not looking promising for them to be part of the graduation walk.
The principal doesn’t think it’s a huge number of students, and it appears they are students who were on the fringes to begin with. But it is something the educators there are noticing, “so that is a concern that we have in that area.”
Members of three after-school clubs at the high school — Magnified Giving, the Key Club, and National Honor Society — are taking on a service project. Starting Jan. 19, they will collect toiletries, such as small-size shampoos and deodorants, plus fill baggies for individuals and donate the bags to the Clinton County Homeless Shelter.
Sabina Elementary teachers in mid-December began a book study of “What We Say and How We Say It Matter” by Mike Anderson, according to a submitted written report by Principal Matt Willian.
“This book study has sparked a great deal of discussion around our language, and has been particularly challenging. In summary, we are challenging our language patterns, and reexamining almost everything that we say, and the specific impact that our words have on our students,” Willian wrote.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.