Oregon Trail schools, Senior Center close amid Coronavirus concerns
Schools within the Oregon Trail District will close beginning Monday, March 16, and remain closed through Tuesday, March 31, is response to an announcement by Gov. Kate Brown released at 10:10 p.m., Thursday, March 12.
The news came after a press conference that same morning, at which Brown said school closures would come with unacceptable costs, including to low-income children who depend on schools for health care and meals.
But in a dizzying series of events reflecting the rapidly evolving crisis, Washington, Ohio and California announced school closures and top Multnomah County officials recommended the state reconsider closures and start preparing, as first reported by the Portland Tribune.
Oregon Trail administrators are meeting this morning (March 13) to discuss how to move forward on instruction and provide other needed services for students.
So far, all school events have been cancelled, including prom and other competitions that were scheduled to either be hosted by Sandy or attended by Sandy students.
"We will continue to provide updated information through our normal messaging systems as it becomes available," Superintendent Aaron Bayer said in a release at 9:15 a.m. "Keep an eye on our website at: oregontrailschools.com/COVID-19. Thank you for your support as we all work together to do what is best for our students, staff and community."
The Post will publish more information on the district's response as the information is available.
Outside of the parameters of the school district, the Sandy Senior/Community Center has announced plans to close as of Monday, March 16.
"What I can tell you right now is the volunteer fair (which was planned for Saturday, March 14) is canceled with hopes to reschedule (and) the center will close beginning Monday," Community Services Director Tanya Richardson said. "The essential services will continue such as Meals on Wheels."
City department heads are meeting with the city manager this morning to discuss actions going forward.
So far Community Services is the only city department to announce imminent closure.
At the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce, the annual State of the City event originally scheduled for March 25 has been postponed. A new date has yet to be determined. The chamber board is still working to make a "game plan" on how to handle future events and meetings.
Up the mountain
As of this morning, Mt. Hood Meadows has announced it will continue daily operations as usual for the remainder of the season.
Some events have been canceled because of concerns involving the coronavirus.
"At this time we do not expect disruptions to our scheduled daily operations," said V.P. of Sales and Marketing Dave Tragethon. "But we are canceling certain events in compliance with Oregon Gov. Kate Brown's ban on events that attract 250 or more people."
The USSA (United States Ski and Snowboard Association) has canceled all remaining ski racing events. Also canceled was this week's OISA State High School Snowboard Championships at Mt. Hood Meadows.
Meadows is scheduled to operate daily through April 19 with some added weekends until May 2.
"Governor Brown has clarified that for now the limitation only applies to organized events with over 250 people in one place," Tragethon said. "It doesn't apply to normal business operations like stores and malls, which allows us to continue operations."
Tragethon added that Meadows "has and will continue to take precautions recommended by the CDC (Center for Disease Control) to mitigate coronavirus concerns."
"We've procured additional hand sanitation stations that are located throughout the lodge spaces," he said. "We've stepped up our disinfecting routines with more frequent wipe downs of surfaces in public areas. We are educating our team and our guests about preventative measures — with an emphasis on frequent and vigorous hand washing. We've also made it very clear to our team that we encourage them to stay home if they experience symptoms — particularly fever, cough and shortness of breath - or other cold or flu symptoms."
For more information on Meadows coronavirus preventative measures visit SkiHood.com/COVID.
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