CPS Officials Announce Help with Meals, Learning, Health Services During Closures

March 17, 2020

By Dan Griffin, WLWT

Cincinnati Public Schools are closed for at least three weeks and district officials are working to make sure students have what they need.

That includes meals and health services.

Monday night, district leaders said the focus is on the health and safety of students and staff in these unprecedented times.

"We know and we recognize our day-to-day life will be quite different for a while," Cincinnati Board of Education President Carolyn Jones said.

District officials said they are protecting 36,000 students and 6,000 employees as the effects of COVID-19 cripple the typical school year within Cincinnati Public Schools.

"This isn't something that I ever thought that I would see or live through in my lifetime," Superintendent Laura Mitchell said.

Mitchell said the district is working through a pandemic plan, sanitizing schools while they are closed.

They're also providing homework packets for students to help them learn away from their classrooms.

"Meals will continue at Cincinnati Public Schools over the next three weeks when schools are closed," Dining Services Director Jessica Shelly said.

Officials said starting Tuesday they will provide meals to children ages 1 and older at 24 school sites from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for pickup only.

They said Mondays and Wednesdays, students will get two breakfast and two lunch meals and Fridays, one breakfast and one lunch meal.

School leaders said children must be present at the time, but they do not have to be a CPS student.

Mitchell said six school-based health centers will remain open for use by the Cincinnati Health Department.

It's a situation they said they'll assess by the minute.

"We know that there is a light at the end of this tunnel and we will be prepared to receive our kids when school is reopened," Mitchell said.

School officials said they plan to pass out lessons and work at key locations for families.

For now, district leaders said they aren't sure how this closure will impact graduation and testing.

They said they are standing by for more information from the Ohio Department of Education.

Officials said parents can find out more information on the district's website.

They can also get answers to questions by calling the customer care center at (513) 363-0123.

The school sites where children can receive meals include AMIS, Bond Hill, Cheviot, Frederick Douglass School, Hays-Porter, JP Parker, LEAP, Mt. Airy, Mt. Washington, Oyler, Parker Woods, Pleasant Hill, Riverview, Roberts, Rockdale, Roselawn, Rothenberg, Sayler Park, South Avondale, Western Hills High School, Westwood, Winton Hills, Withrow and Woodford.

The health centers where services will continue include the Academy of World Languages, Aiken High School, Mt. Airy, Riverview East, Roberts Academy and Dater/West High campus.

Mitchell said those schools have a direct entrance into the health centers.