Schools, cities deal with COVID-19

By Jeff Shultz
Managing Editor

The State Department of Education announced earlier this week that all schools in the state would be closed until April 6 due to the Coronavirus health emergency in Oklahoma.
The announcement caused school districts to quickly come up with some type of food program for students who depend on the breakfast and lunch programs.
The Maysville Public Schools Child Nutrition Program will be providing sack lunches and delivering them to all designated bus stops during the hours of 10 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
They will also have a grab-and- go where parents can pick up their child’s food from the hours of 10 – 11 a.m.; food will be picked up in the drop off line at the elementary. 
Parents and guardians need to contact the school or the site administrators on Thursday, March 19, from 8 a.m.-12 p.m.
Please have parents call, not students, make sure you notify us as to how many students you have, and we will need their name and their grade.  All students can participate.
In Pauls Valley, the schools will start providing breakfast and lunch for students starting Tuesday, March 24.
Anyone interested in the program, can contact Jill Foster at 405-238-6453. They will deliver food to those students who are in need of a delivery service.
Stratford Public Schools will offer a free pick-up-and-go breakfast and lunch for students and children ages 0-18 on Monday through Thursday.
Breakfast will be served from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“We’re asking parents to pick up the meals at the south side of the elementary building,” said Superintendent Michael Blackburn
Each site will be open on Monday morning, March 23, from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for parents to pick up any medicine they have given to the schools.
For more information, call 580-759-3615.
In other COVID-19 news:
•Stratford Firefighters want the elderly or home bound citizens of the Stratford area to know they are willing to pick-up and deliver groceries and supplies if you are unable or worried about being in public during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call 580-759-3360 to arrange for assistance.
• The Tri-City Library in Elmore City is closed.
The Maysville Library is open with its regular hours. Check their Facebook page for any changes to their schedule.
•The Pauls Valley Chamber of Commerce has cancelled all events and meetings until the end of April including the Wild Hog Hunt and the Chamber Celebration on April 21.
Sherri Wing, president of the chamber, said they hope to reschedule the celebration for the fall. Wing encourages the public to visit local drive thrus, local restaurants for to-go orders and to purchase gift cards from local vendors to keep our small business community thriving during this time.
“The health and safety of our community comes first,” Wing said.
She also stated that their Facebook page has information about small business loans and shared resources.
For the latest chamber information, please visit their Facebook page and website. They will be sending out newsletters shortly, and the staff is working remotely until further notice.
•Many churches are also closing their doors temporarily, so please check their Facebook pages or call.
In Pauls Valley, Trinity Baptist Church decided to shut down Wednesday night services for two weeks and live stream this Sunday’s service on their Facebook page.
“We’re encouraging our members to not meet at the church on Sunday morning,” said Trinity Pastor Rev. Dwayne Johnson.
Johnson said he visited with Oklahoma Baptist leadership along with school and city officials to know exactly how they were responding to recommendations from the CDC and state agencies.
“It goes without saying this involved and still involves a lot of prayer,” Johnson said.