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New Franklin schools to go virtual, citing dozens of students, staff in COVID-19 quarantine

NEW FRANKLIN, Mo. (KMIZ)

The New Franklin School District will move all classes online for two weeks with more than 80 students in quarantine because of coronavirus exposure.

New Franklin Superintendent Brian Cordel said Friday morning that he had just notified parents of the decision, which was made during a special school board meeting Thursday.

"We aren't necessarily going virtual because of the number of positive COVID cases, but it was really because of the number of students and in particular the number of staff that were being quarantined because of being in close contact with a positive case," Cordel wrote in an email to ABC 17 News. "In a small school that can raise the number quickly and we were having a very difficult time finding enough substitutes."

Cordel said that the district had 81 students and 10 staff members in quarantine as of Friday morning. Another four students and four staff members have tested positive for COVID-19.

The district has about 450 students, according to the New Franklin School District website. Howard County, where New Franklin is located, had 31 active COVID-19 cases as of Thursday, according to the county health department.

Nearly all public school districts in Mid-Missouri started classes in-person at the beginning of the school year, with Columbia Public Schools being the one exception. However, several of them have had to switch to all-online education because of students or staff in quarantine.

The Cole County R-V School District in Eugene announced Thursday that it was moving online starting Friday. Like New Franklin, the district plans to have students return Nov. 16.

Check back for more on this developing story and watch ABC 17 News at 5 and 6.

Coronavirus / Howard / K-12 education / News / Top Stories
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Matthew Sanders

Matthew Sanders is the digital content director at ABC 17 News.

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