The Times 

Guidelines for keeping schools open in Columbia County


September 24, 2020

DAYTON—Dayton and Starbuck schools have opened with full attendance. Because Columbia County’s population is low, a few cases of COVID-19 can impact whether or not schools remain open.

According to Martha Lanman at the County Health Department, keeping schools open depends on whether new cases are connected to kids in the schools, and will be decided on a case by case basis.

If new cases are not connected, the Health Department will analyze the situation and have a conversation about whether it is safe to remain open.

An outbreak will be considered if there are two unrelated cases in the Dayton Schools or two unrelated cases in the Starbuck school. If that happens, the Health Department will conduct contact investigations to determine if the school needs to be closed.

All contact investigation is done by Columbia County Public Health nurses and trained community members.

To keep the community safe, residents are asked to stay close to home, be aware of how close they are to others, and wear a mask. It takes only one person to spread the virus throughout the community. Columbia County Public Health has 30,000 cloth masks available, and residents are encouraged to come by and pick some up or call.


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