GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. — Guilford County Schools has canceled all out-of-state and international travel, according to a release from the district Thursday.
The district made the decision after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a pandemic. GCS expects this travel ban to remain in place from now through the end of the school year.
On Wednesday, Colfax Elementary said it will work to refund money that has already been paid, but can't guarantee all money to be refundable.
“We recognize and regret that this decision may create financial hardships for students and families as travel arrangements have already been made and may not be refundable,” said Wanda Legrand, GCS chief student services officer. “However, with the WHO declaration, we believe this is a necessary step to protect the health and welfare of our students and staff.”
The school district held a news conference Wednesday about the contingency plan in place moving forward while school leaders monitor the coronavirus.
"We hope the coronavirus doesn’t impact Guilford County and our schools however we know that that thought would be short-sighted," GCS Chief of Student Services Dr. Wanda Legrand said.
Guilford County Schools' plan consists of four phases.
Right now, we're in phase one, which is a proactive and preventative phase.
"We purchased several large quantities of hand soap, paper towels, and dispensers," Dr. Legrand explained. "We also purchased disinfecting wipes, we've produced fact sheets and communicated with parents and principals."
FACTS NOT FEAR
Remember facts, not fear when talking about the coronavirus. You should take the same measures recommended by health leaders to prevent the spread of the flu and other viruses. That means washing your hands, avoiding touching your face, and covering coughs and sneezes.
WHERE YOU GET INFORMATION ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS IS IMPORTANT
It is important to make sure the information you are getting about the coronavirus is coming directly from reliable sources like the CDC and NCDHHS. Be careful not to spread misinformation about coronavirus on social media.
NC CORONAVIRUS HOTLINE
The state also has a special hotline set up where you can call 866-462-3821 for more information on the coronavirus. You can also submit questions online at ncpoisoncontrol.org or select chat to talk with someone about the virus.
You can also text keyword VIRUS to WFMY News 2 at 336-379-5775 to find out more information.