Education, Latest News, Monongalia County

Mon students back in class after a wintry week of snow days

Monongalia County’s school buildings weathered the storm last week, coming through the onslaught of snow and frigid temperatures with no structural issues, the district reported.

That meant no leaking roofs or frozen waterpipes, Deputy Superintendent Donna Talerico said Monday.

“Thankfully,” she said. “This was actually a normal day of school for us. It was good to have everyone back.”

She was referring to Monday, when students were in their classrooms after the wintry week.

As the county was gripped by the cold, Talerico said the heating units of some buildings did require some quick, on-the-spot maintenance. No classrooms had to be shifted, though, and all buildings remained open on the days school was held.

“Tweaking the HVAC is just a fact of life for us,” the deputy superintendent said.

In the midst of it all, though, a number of Mon’s sixth-graders were able to roll up their sleeves for their second COVID shots, she reported.

That was Wednesday.

“We lucked out and were able to get that in,” she said.

Booster shots for other students will be administered in clinics set for next month, in the meantime.

Such clinics, Talerico said, are critical, since the coronavirus continues to be a presence in Mon schools — just not as pronounced as in past weeks.

A total of 219 students and 41 staffers in the district presented with positive diagnoses during the week of Jan. 16-22, according to numbers reported to state Department of Education’s COVID dashboard.

The department is again tracking the virus in every public school in all 55 counties. To see the numbers, visit and follow the COVID-19 link to the report.

While the student-age population is continuing to fall ill with the coronavirus and its variants, the state Department of Health and Human Resources is reporting just 16 hospitalizations, with three of the pediatric patients in intensive care and another on a ventilator.

Meanwhile, Monongalia, which had been showing red for days on the DHHR county alert map, was downgraded to orange for the Monday edition.

However, 30 counties on Monday were still sitting in red on the map, which is the worst hue for the virus.

Look for the weather to operate on a different thermostat reading this week.

AccuWeather is calling for a high of 50 today and 53 on Wednesday, for Groundhog Day. It all dials back down to the 20s and 30s for the weekend, the forecaster said.

Ice continued to be a problem Monday on Lazelle School Road in the University High attendance area. That bus route didn’t run that morning, and likely won’t run for the next several days, Talerico said.

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