All Ballard schools closed on Thursday, Friday due to flu

All Ballard County schools will be closed Thursday and Friday due to the high rate of influenza cases among students and staff.

Administrators met Wednesday to make the decision. “Our district student attendance rate has dropped below 70 percent, and we are using all of the substitute staff we have on our rolls to try and keep classrooms, facilities, and buses operational," said Dr. Casey Allen, Ballard superintendent. "We can't really use our non-traditional instruction (NTI) days, either. We have teachers too sick to teach, and students too sick to learn. NTI days require a certain level of participation to count, and we don’t believe we could meet that threshold."

That only becomes an issue if schools close for future illness or bad weather, Dr. Allen explained. “For the rest of this school year, every day will have to be an NTI day, or it will have to be made up at the end of the year,” he said.

Cafeteria staff will prepare food both days for pick-up at the back doors of the BMHS/BCMS and the BCES cafeterias. Pick-up times at your child’s school will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday. For more information, please contact the cafeteria manager at your child’s school – Lori Williams at BCES (270-665-8400, ext. 2208,<>) or Leeann Harvey at BCMS/BMHS (270-665-8400, ext. 2536,<>).

In light of Tuesday’s tragedy, student counseling services still will be available by appointment at BCMS and BMHS on Thursday and Friday. Please contact Ashley Bodell at BCMS at 270-665-8400, ext. 2303,<>; or Kara Curran at 270-665-8400, ext. 2503,<> to make an appointment.

Additional information is as follows: 

- All school-affiliated daycares will be closed Thursday and Friday.

- All BCMS athletic events are canceled on Thursday. 

- 21st Century after school programs will be in session at BCES and BCMS on Wednesday; both programs will be closed on Thursday.

- Little League athletic events at BCES will be held on schedule on Saturday.

During the closed days, custodial staff will be doing extra deep cleaning and sanitizing facilities, Dr. Allen continued. “We plan to be back in session as usual on Monday,” he said.