COVINGTON, Ky. — The Diocese of Covington announced Diocesan schools will return to the classroom after a federal court halted Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear’s recent coronavirus-related suspension of in-person classes at private and religious schools.
All Diocesan schools will resume in-person instruction beginning Dec. 2, while after-school extracurricular activities and winter sports practices are still on pause until the week of Dec. 14.
In a letter to parents, superintendent Kendra McGuire said the district experienced a substantial increase in positive COVID-19 cases among students and staff during the month of November, but that the majority of cases did not originate or spread in the schools. McGuire said parents overwhelmingly want students back in the classroom.
"We also heard from a number of parents and grandparents who expressed serious concerns over the mental health and well-being of the children when they cannot attend school as it leads to isolation, depression and anxiety," McGuire said.
According to the Covington Diocese, on the morning following the executive order, 24 of the 37 Diocesan schools had no COVID-19 cases among students or staff. McGuire reminded parents to continue with strict safety precautions in order to prevent the spread in schools.
"Sadly, some of our school cases and quarantines could have been avoided if all of our families would have followed the protocols. Since we all truly desire to sustain in-person instruction then we must recommit ourselves to the protocols," McGuire said. "Do not host student parties, gatherings or sleepovers. We have seen spread at these events and it puts our school communities at greater risk of quarantines and illness."
Beshear has appealed the ruling to the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals and asked for an emergency stay of the judge’s order.
On Thursday, Kentucky announced 3,870 new coronavirus cases and 32 new deaths, the highest number of daily statewide cases and the second-highest number of new COVID-19 deaths in a single day.