Dozens of people gathered next to Waynesville schools’ stadium to watch the partial solar eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017. JEREMY KELLEY / STAFF
A handful of local schools and districts decided to close Monday for safety reasons tied to the solar eclipse. They include the Xenia and Northridge districts, plus Dayton Christian in Miami Twp. and Catholic Central High School in Springfield.
Greenon schools are also closed. The school district cited both the eclipse and a weekend car crash that killed two students in announcing its decision.
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Those schools that remain open (the vast majority) are taking a variety of approaches to protect children from the eye damage that can come from looking at the sun without protective glasses.
Beavercreek, Northmont and Waynesville are among the districts that ordered special eclipse glasses for all students and will have supervised outdoor events.
Other districts including Kettering, Miamisburg and Franklin will keep students indoors and have lessons about the eclipse while students watch a live-stream broadcast.
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An automated call Sunday from Kettering Superintendent Scott Inskeep informed families that students will be indoors because there was a safety recall on the eclipse glasses the district ordered.
Many districts are emphasizing the safety precautions they are taking, especially since some schools’ dismissal time is near the 2:28 p.m. peak of the eclipse.
Guidance from Springboro schools says that dismissed students are to walk in a straight line outside and look directly ahead or at the ground. “Any student not following the guidelines will be escorted back in to the school.”
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At Greeneview schools, afternoon recesses have been moved indoors, and New Lebanon schools said elementary students will remain inside during the eclipse with windows covered by closed blinds.
Tecumseh schools moved back middle school and high school dismissal until after the peak of the eclipse. Kettering is allowing elementary students to use the district’s after-school childcare for free if they don’t want to leave during the eclipse.
Huber Heights and Springboro schools are among the districts with special outdoor viewing events for seventh-graders, because Ohio’s science curriculum includes standards about the sun and moon that year.
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Of course some school districts -- such as Fairborn, Troy, West Carrollton, Bellbrook and Tipp City -- haven’t started the school year yet. The impact there is minor, with some afternoon sports and band practices delayed or moved.