School districts in the county have continued with their cleaning and sanitizing efforts in the school buildings to reduce the possible spread of COVID-19 since the beginning of the school year.

John Stith, Hardin County Schools chief operations officer, said for the most part, the cleaning of schools is business as usual but with it taken to another level.

“I would have to say that ... our custodians and staff members do a good job of keeping our campuses clean,” Stith said.

Custodians and teachers both have their own cleaning chemicals they use for both cleaning quickly between classes, and when classrooms are empty for a longer period of time. These are also used on school buses.

Desks, door handles and bathrooms are cleaned throughout the school day. At the end of the day, the whole building is given a thorough cleaning.

He said every day, every room was sanitized during normal, in-person classes at the beginning of the year.

So far, Stith said he has been pleased with the results of not only cleaning efforts, but also individual masking and social distancing efforts as well.

“More than the sanitizing ... what’s really been effective as far as keeping transmission between students and staff to a minimum,” Stith said about social distancing and masks.

Elizabethtown Independent Schools Superintendent Kelli Bush classrooms are cleaned and sanitized between when groups of students rotate. For elementary students, she said they’re given regular hand washing breaks.

She said as far as cleaning protocols and strategies, they have not changed much from the beginning of the year, and said they’re still ensuring social distancing and mask wearing.

“We continue to really not see ... any of that transmission happening within the school building,” Bush said.

According to data from the Kentucky Department for Public Health, Hardin County Schools have so far reported 126 positive cases of COVID-19 among students and 58 cases among staff.

On Monday, the most recent update to the data, there were seven new cases among students and four among staff.

EIS have reported 23 cases among students and eight cases among staff, with three new student cases and one staff case reported Monday.

Stith and Bush said the district will be conducting more of the same cleaning efforts and Centers for Disease Control guidelines they have done since the beginning of the school year.

Since non-traditional instruction began for HCS, Stith said they’ve now been doing more project cleaning again to clean bathrooms and hard to reach places more thoroughly, and also during winter break.

Bush also said staff now conducts more deep cleaning throughout the district since students have been out of the schools, and will continue into winter break.

“We’re very hopeful for our students being back in person. We’re gonna be ready for them,” Stith said.

Andrew Harp can be reached at 270-505-1747 or aharp@thenewsenterprise.com.

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