Heyworth to close elementary school due to uptick in positive COVID-19 cases

The school district made the announcement on Tuesday. (Photo courtesy: Heyworth School District/Facebook)

By Blake Haas

HEYWORTH – Due to rising cases in COVID-19 in the Heyworth School District, leaders are moving elementary students to an online format for the time being.

In consolidation with the McLean County Health Department, Heyworth Superintendent Dr. Lisa Taylor said the district is closing the elementary as the positive cases in students and staff have more than doubled at the elementary school.

At last count, 17 students and four staff members tested positive for COVID-19, while 75 students are considered close contacts and are quarantined.

“At this time, we expect the adaptive pause at the elementary school to be in place for the remainder of this week,” Dr. Taylor said in a press release. “Elementary students will be able to return to in-person learning on October 18 as long as we do not have a significant increase in cases. There will be no school activities or events at the elementary school during this time period.”

Additionally, the district announced junior and senior high students can return to the classroom for in-person learning beginning on Thursday.

The district is also extending the first quarter by one week to allow students and teachers time to complete their work.

In the meantime, the district said they are continuing their efforts to increase ventilation and sanitization.

Blake Haas can be reached at Blake.Haas@Cumulus.com.


Labor Day – Expanding voting rights for all

By Mike Matejka Because of COVID, there is no Labor Day Parade this year.  It’s always a great event for our everyday workers to march proudly down the street and enjoys the festive crowd. If there had been a parade, this year’s Labor Day theme was to be “150 years of struggle: your right to vote.” …

Is federal mobilization the answer?

By Mike Matejka As President Donald Trump threatens to send federal marshals into Chicago, over the objections of Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, recall another Illinois Governor who protested the incursion of armed federal personnel into the city.   Those federal troops, rather than calming, escalated the situation, leading to deaths and violence. Illinois poet Vachel Lindsay…

In these troubled times, to my fellow white Americans

By Mike Matejka Our nation is at a unique watershed in human relations. African-Americans have been killed too many times in the past before George Floyd, but the response to this man’s death is international and all-encompassing. I was a grade-schooler during the Civil Rights 1960s. I watched Birmingham demonstrators hosed and the Selma – Montgomery…

Workers’ Memorial Day – Remember those whose job took their life

Looking around our community, when we say employer, most will respond to State Farm, Country, or Illinois State University.   We too often forget those who are building our roads, serving our food, or our public employees. COVID-19 has made us more aware of the risk.  Going to work every day for some people means…