Paola High School

Paola High School

PAOLA — A Paola High School student is one of six new COVID-19 cases reported by the Miami County Health Department on Thursday, June 11.

All of the people who tested positive reside within the same household and are appropriately isolated, according to a news release from the health department.

Three of the cases are laboratory-confirmed, while the other three are presumptive positive, according to the release.

Paola USD 368 Superintendent Matt Meek said a letter was sent Thursday afternoon to parents of students at Paola Middle School and Paola High School, alerting them that a PHS student has tested positive and that the student attended theater practice on the evening of Wednesday, June 10.

“The Miami County Health Department has conducted contact tracing of the infected student and have notified any student(s) and their family(ies) that were in direct contact as a result of theater practice. Those not notified have been determined to be at no risk,” according to the school district release. “The USD 368 custodial staff has and will continue to thoroughly disinfect the school building.”

Meek said both middle school and high school parents were notified because students from each school have been using Paola High School during the past 10 days for things like conditioning, weightlifting and theater practice, while also taking all appropriate precautions.

PHS theater students were scheduled to perform “All My Sons” on the main stage at the virtual International Thespian Festival on Tuesday, June 23, but Director Leslie Coats said the performance has been canceled and she is on a two-week quarantine.

The health department also reported three new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, June 10, which brings the total number of active cases in Miami County to nine.

The three reported June 10 also were from the same household, which means two households account for all active cases.

Christena Beer, a disease investigator with the Miami County Health Department, said there is no information that suggests the cases from the two households are related in any way.

The nine new cases last week bring the county’s total number of COVID-19 cases so far to 16. The other seven individuals have recovered.

Miami County Health Director Rita McKoon said June 10 that 1,032 Miami County residents have been tested for the coronavrius.

Kansas has 11,419 confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in 91 counties that have resulted in 988 hospitalizations and 245 deaths as of Monday, June 15, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). Kansas has recorded 125,543 negative tests.

Ford County has the most cases at 1,882, followed by Wyandotte County, 1,736; Finney County, 1,508; Leavenworth County, 1,109; Johnson County, 1,106; Seward County, 907; Sedgwick County, 760; Lyon County, 465; and Shawnee County, 461.

Editor and Publisher Brian McCauley can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or

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