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Highland County school district closes due to surge in student illness

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Posted at 11:17 AM, Aug 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-24 11:17:30-04

LEESBURG, Ohio — Fairfield Local Schools in Highland County has closed its campuses for the rest of the week after a spike in absenteeism due to illness, officials announced this week.

In a statement issued Monday, Superintendent Tim Dettwiller said cases of multiple illnesses have caused a 315% increase in absent students over the last week, with 14.5% of the district's students out sick.

"The cause is due to multiple viruses flowing through our school," Dettwiller said in a statement. "Of course COVID is a factor, but we have Rhinovirus and bronchial infections at a high rate, as well."

Dettwiller said he aimed to reopen campuses on Monday, Aug. 30. The district brought students back to classrooms for the start of the school year on Aug. 12.

"It is my hope that this break allows us to get everyone healthy and back to school next Monday," he said.