KEYSER - Within a few hours of announcing all schools in the Frankfort District would be shut down Thursday due to a staff member and two students testing positive for COVID-19, the Mineral County Health Department received positive results for five additional people from throughout the county.


By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - Within a few hours of announcing all schools in the Frankfort District would be shut down Thursday due to a staff member and two students testing positive for COVID-19, the Mineral County Health Department received positive results for five additional people from throughout the county.
The latest positives included two employees at the Dawnview Center nursing home in Fort Ashby, one employee and one student at WVU Potomac State College, and an employee at the KinderCenter Daycare in Ridgeley.
The rash of positives started Wednesday with the confirmation that one itinerant employee and two students at Frankfort High School had tested positive.
An itinerant employee travels to more than one school in the course of their duties.
Superintendent of schools Troy Ravenscroft took immediate action and closed all schools in the Frankfort District so county school and health department personnel could work to identify persons who may have had close contact with either of the three, including students, staff, family members and friends.
“Exercising an abundance of caution, and to ensure comprehensive contact tracing and identification of impacted staff and students, all schools in the Frankfort District will be closed Thursday,” Ravenscroft said, explaining that the day would be a distance learning day for the students.
“This includes Fort Ashby, Wiley Ford, Frankfort Intermediate, Frankfort Middle School and Frankfort High School,” he added.
As the other positives were confirmed throughout the day, contact tracing was launched for those facilities as well.
Those who need to be quarantined will be contacted by the health department.
Also on Wednesday, Mineral County was downgraded to a “yellow” status on the WVDHHR COVID map.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, everyone is urged to follow best health practices as issued by the Governor’s Executive Orders and outlined by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and the West Virginia Department of Education guidance. This includes wearing face masks and  practicing social distancing, hand washing and cleaning protocols regularly.
Those who feel the need to be tested should contact their primary care provider, local hospital, or health care clinic.
For further information about COVID-19, visit the DHHR website at www.coronavirus.wv.gov or the CDC at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.