Health News

Health News

Coronavirus Information

Vermilion Local Schools is carefully monitoring news and updates from the Erie and Lorain County Health Departments, the Ohio Department of Health and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) regarding the Coronavirus outbreak.  The Ohio Department of Education issued a list of frequently asked questions for Ohio schools and districts, which can be found  HERE
Late this afternoon Governor Mike DeWine announced that three (3) confirmed cases of Coronavirus have been identified in Ohio.  A State of Emergency was declared, which will, among other things, allow the State to more easily manage procurement of supplies.  More information is available on the Ohio Department of Health website here:
Superintendent Pempin met with district stakeholders to discuss and prepare for local response, including appropriate cleaning of facilities, the availability of additional hand sanitizing stations, and preparations for a possible pandemic.  An emphasis on hand washing for both staff and students remains the single best way to reduce the possibility of spread of the disease.     
The following information was communicated by the Centers for Disease Control on Tuesday, March 3, 2020: 

Risk Assessment

Reported community spread of COVID-19 in parts of the United States raises the level of concern about the immediate threat for COVID-19 for those communities. The potential public health threat posed by COVID-19 is very high, to the United States and globally.


Situation in U.S.

Imported cases of COVID-19 in travelers have been detected in the U.S.  Person-to-person spread of COVID-19 was first reported among close contacts of returned travelers from Wuhan.  During the week of February 23, CDC reported community spread of the virus that causes COVID-19 in California (in two places), Oregon and Washington. Community spread in Washington resulted in the first death in the United States from COVID-19, as well as the first reported case of COVID-19 in a health care worker, and the first potential outbreak in a long-term care facility.


At this time, however, most people in the United States will have little immediate risk of exposure to this virus. This virus is NOT currently spreading widely in the United States. However, it is important to note that current global circumstances suggest it is likely that this virus will cause a pandemic. This is a rapidly evolving situation and the risk assessment will be updated as needed.

Current risk assessment:

  • For most of the American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low.
  • People in communities where ongoing community spread with the virus that causes COVID-19 has been reported are at elevated, though still relatively low risk of exposure.
  • Healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-19 are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Close contacts of persons with COVID-19 also are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Travelers returning from affected international locations where community spread is occurring also are at elevated risk of exposure.

CDC has developed guidance to help in the risk assessment and management of people with potential exposures to COVID-19.


Previous Announcements:

  • As of February 24, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 53 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. and regularly updates numbers on its website. Of the cases, 14 were detected and tested in the U.S. through U.S. public health surveillance systems; this includes 12 people with travel history to China, and two involving person-to-person spread. The remaining 39 are people repatriated to the U.S. by the Department of State; this includes three people who had been in Wuhan and 36 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship. The disease is not spreading in the community in the U.S. at this time, and the CDC currently considers risk to the general public to be low.   

The novel coronavirus is primarily spread through respiratory droplets, which means to become infected, people generally must be within six feet of someone who is contagious and have droplets land on them. Symptoms of coronavirus appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, runny nose and difficulty breathing. There is currently no vaccine to prevent 2019-nCoV infection.

To prevent the spread of any virus including novel coronavirus, practice these preventative measures:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.


Message from the Superintendent

March 2, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians:

We are closely monitoring the news and CDC reports regarding the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).   In determining the appropriate response to this situation, the Vermilion Local School District will rely on the guidance and recommendations provided by the National Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Ohio Department of Health, and the Erie/Lorain County Health Departments. 

You can help with prevention efforts by following the recommendations below from the CDC.  These guidelines are similar to the best practices we encourage everyone to follow during flu season:

  • Wash hands frequently.
  • Cover your nose and mouth: When coughing or sneezing cover with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.  If a tissue is not available, use sleeve or elbow.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Stay home when sick and don’t return to school for at least 24 hours after being fever-free without the use of medication.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Individuals with chronic health issues and/or individuals experiencing severe symptoms should be evaluated by a medical professional.

The Vermilion Schools will follow all recommendations from the CDC regarding the cleaning of school facilities and equipment frequently touched by students and staff.  Our staff will continue to encourage students to wash hands often.  

We are in process of procuring extra hand sanitation dispensers and disinfecting wipes which will be made available in classrooms and in our cafeterias.If a confirmed case of COVID-19 virus is reported in our area, we will take direction from the CDC, the Ohio Department of Health and Erie County Board of Health regarding potential school closings.  



Philip M. Pempin, Superintendent

Stopping the Spread of Germs at Home, Work and School

General Guidelines for Parents
1.   Get Vaccinated

The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccine each season. Check with your doctor or local Health Department for more information about flu vaccine.  

2.   Practice Good Health Habits

  • Avoid close contact - Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • Stay home when you are sick - If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.
  • Cover your mouth and nose - Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick. 
  • Clean your hands - Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth - Most experts believe that flu viruses spread mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it, and then touching their own mouth, eyes or nose.
  • Stop the Spread of Germs - Healthy habits can protect everyone from getting germs or spreading germs at home, work or school. 

3.   Clean and disinfect surfaces or objects.
Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu can help slow the spread of influenza.

4.   Keep your child home from school. 

If your child is not feeling well, your physician is the best person to consult about whether he or she can go to school. Common sense, con­cern for your child's well-being, and the possibility of infecting classmates should all contribute to the decision about whether your child should stay home.  Generally, keep your child home if:  

  1. he or she has a fever
  2. he or she is not well enough to participate in class
  3. you think he or she may be contagious to other children

If your child is feeling better, but still has minor symptoms such as  runny nose or slight head­ache, they can return to school as long as none of the three symptoms above are present. Make sure the school and your child have a phone number where you can be reached if more serious symptoms develop.  

   Centers for Disease Control
2.   Caring for Your School-Age Child: Ages 5 to 12 (Copyright © 2004 American Academy of Pediatrics)
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