SOLON, OH — As Northeast Ohio's COVID-19 surge slows, the Solon Schools are relaxing certain health and safety protocols within the district.
"As we see sustained decreases in the incidence of COVID-19 among students and staff, we will be relaxing some of the enhanced protocols we put in place to mitigate the impact of the omicron surge in our schools. Staffing concerns have stabilized and the potential for a possible limited pivot to remote learning is even more unlikely," district officials said.
If cases continue to decline and staffing shortages become a thing of the past, on Jan. 31, the district will lift its capacity limits for concerts, drama productions, and sporting events. The Solon Schools will also restart parent volunteering in primary grades for upcoming Valentine's Day parties.
Other protocols — including the district's mask mandate — will remain in place for now. Solon School officials said both county and state health guidelines make masking key to keeping students in school.
As of this week, there were four cases of COVID-19 confirmed among students on-campus, according to the district's COVID-19 dashboard. More students could have been quarantine eligible because of their exposure to the virus.
"Without masking those numbers would be significantly higher, and the amount of time those students need to quarantine would be much longer. We will continue to evaluate the need for all
required protocols, including mandated masks district wide, in the next four weeks," the district said in a communication shared during Monday's Board of Education meeting.
Ohio is currently averaging more than 21,000 new COVID-19 cases per day, to go along with 387 COVID-19 hospitalizations per day. More than 5,300 Ohioans are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, according to the state hospital association.
However, there are signs the omicron surge is moving away from northern Ohio, where positivity rates have been cut in half, and into southern and western Ohio.