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Mon schools superintendent: Declining COVID numbers in local district reflect state trend of the same

MORGANTOWN — Eddie Campbell Jr. notched a pandemic first Monday afternoon.

That was when the Monongalia County school superintendent confessed he’s actually rooting for all zeros on a report card.

“I can’t wait,” said Campbell, who began his academic career as a teacher and coach.

“Zeros. Across the board.”

The report card to which he is referring is the COVID-19 wrap-up the district’s central office compiles every Monday.

Said report details the fortunes of the coronavirus the week before in Mon’s school buildings and other facilities related to the business of educating students.

While students and staffers are still coming down with COVID, the numbers are trending the other way.

A total of 35 students across the district tested positive last week, according to the report, with another 10 staffers also presenting with a positive diagnosis.

Add that to the 186 students and seven staffers out on quarantine as a precaution over possible contact with the virus.

“Precaution,” is the watchword, the superintendent said.

Campbell wants to keep it that way, he said.

“We’re not going to let up,” Campbell said. “We’re going to keep doing all the pandemic protocols.”

While Mon’s district has avoided outbreak cases so far, that’s not the same elsewhere in West Virginia.

Fifty-three schools across 25 counties are dealing with the above to varying degrees, according to numbers culled by the state Department of Education.

Point Pleasant High School in Mason County is grappling with 95 such cases – the highest in the Mountain State.

On the other end is Wood County’s Jefferson Elementary, which is reporting just two outbreak cases.

All 55 counties aren’t quite as red as they were, as charted on the color-coded alert map maintained by the state Department of Health and Human Resources.

Mon was showing orange as of Monday.

Summers, Tucker and Wirt counties came is a green, the best designation on the map.

Twenty other counties were sitting in red – the map’s worst designation.

That’s better than it was, too, Campbell said.

Which, he added, makes it relative to the school district he helps lead.

“Our numbers are a reflection of what we’re seeing in the communities and across the state,” he said.

“We’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing.”

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