Nearly 4000 Sign Petition Urging MCPS to Take Action on Coronavirus

Over 3,600 people have signed a petition calling for Montgomery County Public Schools to take concrete action to protect students and teachers against the coronavirus. 

The petition, posted to Change.org two days ago, asks MCPS to take six steps to prevent spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) within public schools. Concern comes from possible student exposure to the coronavirus. 

The Maryland Department of Health announced that someone confirmed to have COVID-19 attended an event at The Village, a retirement home in Rockville, on Feb. 28. Students from MCPS schools, including Thomas S. Wootton High School and Robert Frost Middle School volunteered at The Village after Feb. 28, creating concern amongst the community. 

Now, families are demanding MCPS take new steps to prevent community spread. The steps include MCPS officials instructing those who visited the Village at Rockville after Feb. 28 to self-quarantine for 14 days, as well as granting MCPS students flexibility to stay at home if they so choose due to the coronavirus.

The petition also calls on administrators to create remote teaching opportunities in advance of a school close, so students can continue to learn if classes are disrupted. Signatories have also supported cancelling any non-urgent student meetings or gatherings to prevent community spread. Extra-curricular activities at MCPS schools have not yet been cancelled due to concern over the coronavirus. 

The petition calls for facilities to be thoroughly cleaned and re-sanitized, as well as encouraging students to wash their hands frequently and thoroughly. Some signatories commented, saying that MCPS is currently not meeting this expectation. 

“MCPS is not taking even the simplest steps to keep the kids safe or following their own recommendations. How do I know this? Just simple things like providing wipes for kids to wipe down chromebooks before use (a different user every class period) and wipes so that they don’t have to touch surfaces will not be provided,” wrote Laura Simon, who signed the petition.

Finally, the petition calls for MCPS to move up or reschedule spring break to decrease the time the virus could spread through schools.  Spring break is currently scheduled for April 6-13. 

“Preventative and proactive measures (including school closures) has been proven as an effective method in reducing case mortality with regard to the 1918 pandemic. It’s time to close schools before the virus spreads further,” wrote Ethan Groboski, who signed the petition.  

Schools within the D.C. public school system were closed on Monday for intensive cleaning and disinfecting. MCPS has yet to cancel school or make any academic calendar changes related to the virus. 

Montgomery Community Media reached out to the public information office of MCPS and did not receive a response.

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About Grace Mottley

Grace Mottley is an intern for Montgomery County Media. She studies at the University of Maryland, where she is majoring in multi-platform journalism.

Comments

25 Responses to “Nearly 4000 Sign Petition Urging MCPS to Take Action on Coronavirus”

  1. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 7:37 pm responded with... #

    Schools closing would be a highly effective measure to take.

  2. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 8:04 pm responded with... #

    There are 5, yes FIVE confirmed case of this virus in the STATE, and you want to shut down the school!!!??? The CDC is “reporting” 34 – 49 MILLION cases of the flu, 12 – 23 MILLION medical visits, 350 – 620 THOUSAND flu hospitalizations and 20 – 52 THOUSAND flu related deaths! No quarantine, no shut downs, no OVER reaction!

    Get a grip!!!

  3. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 8:20 pm responded with... #

    They really need to shut down MCPS what are they waiting for some more kids to get sick before they close it down???? 😡😡😡😡

  4. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 9:30 pm responded with... #

    Our kids are going to die

  5. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 10:42 pm responded with... #

    Don’t risk it like this MCPS. We have younger siblings at home and senior citizens in the area and we can’t risk spreading it to them

  6. Avatar
    On March 9, 2020 at 11:11 pm responded with... #

    why dont they close schools till spring bresk and had the summer holidays 30 days

  7. Avatar
    On March 10, 2020 at 10:51 am responded with... #

    Sign me up!cx

  8. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 7:14 am responded with... #

    Then some kids will miss camp

  9. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 8:51 am responded with... #

    Towson University and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County have canceled classes for the rest of this week, as did the private Loyola University of Maryland. Additionally, Johns Hopkins University canceled in-person classes for all students starting Wednesday, and planned to transition to remote instruction at least through April 12.

    https://www.baltimoresun.com/coronavirus/bs-md-towson-university-coronavirus-20200310-xugpgicbpjg2bohrmdiircbq4m-story.html

    Mr. Bossert was the head of infectious disease in Homeland Security before that department was retired.

    Bossert says we’re in trouble if we don’t act quickly – 10 days! https://abcnews.go.com/GMA/News/video/steps-expected-response-white-house-coronavirus-69480254

    Bossert very disappointed and nervous: https://abcnews.go.com/ThisWeek/video/bossert-disappointed-carsons-message-individual-prevention-69468617

    It’s time to close the schools now or it will be too late:

    If you can read the Post:
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/03/09/its-now-or-never-us-if-it-hopes-keep-coronavirus-burning-out-control/

    If you cannot read the Post:
    https://ijr.com/trump-adviser-urges-closures-quarantines-coronavirus/

    The Montgomery county council has cancelled public meetings like this one: https://www.mymcmedia.org/montgomery-council-cancels-mondays-transportation-public-forum/

  10. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 10:01 am responded with... #

    HEY STOP!!! WAHHH I DONT WANT SCHOOL IDOOT W

  11. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 10:04 am responded with... #

    SO MANY PEOPLE AT THIS SCHOOL IS SICK!!! THIS WHOLE MCPS AND WORLD IS AT RISK.
    NYC ALREADY CLOSED BC THEY ACTUALLY R SMART!! WHY MCPS NOT CLOSE?! THEY WANT USELESS BAD EDUCATION OVER HEALTH FOR THE FUTURE YOUNG GENERATIONS?! HAHA UR HALARIOUS ACTIONS MAKE ME SO DISGUSTED. U BETTER FIX IT NOW!!!!!

  12. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 11:29 am responded with... #

    Italy started with 12 people being sick. Now the whole country is affected, with drama and tragedy in ICUs, high mortality rate and thousands of people sick.

    Don’t take 5 people as a real number. There are many more who are sick but not tested yet.

    Please CLOSE the schools.

  13. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 12:48 pm responded with... #

    My little Jimmy and big Jessica are going to die. Montgomery county really NEEDS to shut down the schools.

  14. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 12:52 pm responded with... #

    I’m worried sick about Casey and Cae. I really do hope they shut down the schools. They’re around 5 cases in just a week or two. If schools continue, that might triple or double. What’s the big deal? Just close down the schools, then the kids can still get their education online, with no deathly disease going around!

  15. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 1:06 pm responded with... #

    Cancel school

  16. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 1:46 pm responded with... #

    To you who said get a grip, are you following the rwaction worldwide? Do governments around the world normally impose such strict measures with the illnesses you listed?and no need for rudeness

  17. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 8:20 pm responded with... #

    we NEED TO SHUT DOWN SCHOOLS!

  18. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 9:49 pm responded with... #

    Close the schools immediately is the best way to stop spreading Coronavirus. Our life is more valuable than knowledge. You can learn whenever living. If you die, Do you still have chance to go to school ????
    MCPS listen to us!
    MCPS protect our children!
    MCPS protect your citizens

    Thanks,

  19. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 10:03 pm responded with... #

    LET ME TAKE OVER I WILL STOP CORNOAVIRUS FROM WIDESPEAD I WILL SAVE YOUR CHILDREN AND Everyone FROM CORNEAVIRUS YOU CAN COUNT ON ME I AM THE SAVIOR OF THE EARTH. REBUILD AMERICA REBUILDING OUR FUTURE A NEW CHOICE FOR DEMOCRATS MIKE WILL GET IT DONE ASK NOT WHAT YOUR CONTRY CAN DO FOR YOU AND WE WILL STOP THE CORENAVIRUS LEND ME YOUR TO DEFEAT RUSSIA AND SATAN AND REMOVE TRUMP FROM THE OFFICE PERMANENT

  20. Avatar
    On March 11, 2020 at 10:14 pm responded with... #

    Listen, people think this whole virus thing is getting out of control…and it’s TRUE! Today, my friend said she has SIX relatives who have the coronavirus. Plus, about 8/10 of the items we use today are made in China. Don’t tell me no one is concerned about that!

  21. Avatar
    On March 12, 2020 at 7:52 am responded with... #

    This is not the typical flu virus! Wait up!!!
    It is probably spreading like wildfire.
    Similar thing happened hundred years ago and you guys are treating it just like then. this virus gonna kill a lot of people and you guys will be responsible for it!

  22. Avatar
    On March 12, 2020 at 8:44 am responded with... #

    Stopp

  23. Avatar
    On March 12, 2020 at 9:16 am responded with... #

    So since teachers are forced to go to school even if they are concerned for there safety and others. If I get this corona virus and die my family will be able to sue MCPS or anyone else that gets it and dies due to being forced to come to school right? Literally was forced to cancel my days off and was demanded to come to work even tho I have the sick time off. I also have lung problems which would make me a high risk person, yet they want me to come to school and possibly die or worst spread it to others near me or any kids. So In short parents should know teachers are not being allowed to take days off Due to the corona virus even if they are at high risk

  24. Avatar
    On March 12, 2020 at 11:15 am responded with... #

    Why are they waiting for kids to die just to cancel school?

  25. Avatar
    On March 12, 2020 at 11:45 am responded with... #

    Before you close schools, think about who will take care of those kids. Many immigrant low income kids do not have internet access or computers. Also parents rely on schools for food and supervicion. In addition, let the experts make those decisions. That’s why they make the big salaries.

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