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Dear Othello School District Community:

Early this afternoon, we were notified that two staff members at McFarland Middle School were experiencing symptoms consistent with coronavirus (COVID-19), which include fever, cough and shortness of breath. These individuals self-quarantined and visited a local healthcare provider. The healthcare provider tested the individuals for COVID-19 and the tests came back positive.  

As soon as Othello School District was notified of this situation, we immediately contacted the Department of Health (DOH), as is consistent with required protocols. Based on the information we received from DOH and out of an abundance of caution, the district will close McFarland Middle School starting today through July 7, 2020.

As is always the case, our top priority at Othello School District is to keep our students, staff and community healthy and safe. Our custodial staff has been mobilized to begin thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting McFarland Middle School. Additionally, we are working closely with the local health department to get in contact with the families of those staff members who may have come in recent contact with the individuals who are being tested for COVID-19 to discuss precautionary measures.

Our custodial staff is increasing cleaning frequently across the district, and we will provide disposable wipes as well as hand sanitizer and require the use of face masks in all district facilities.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation and provide updates, including if there are other confirmed cases within this district. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Abby Hilmes at or Thalia Lemus at  You may also contact the Department of Health (DOH) if you have questions about COVID-19 at 1-800-525-0127 and press #.


Kenneth C. Hurst Sr.