Coronavirus roundup for March 18th: BCSC, Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, Thrive Alliance, Jennings County

Bartholomew County closes buildings to public

Bartholomew County Emergency Management is announcing that public access to county government buildings will be prohibited from Thursday, March 19, to April 6th.

All personnel whom this effects, will be granted access to their offices, and access to building entrances. This will be effective only until normal operations resume. Offices will remain open to conduct business by telephone and e-mail inquiries.

Certain court hearings will still need to be held as directed by the Indiana Supreme Court and the local judges.

BCSC clarifies e-Learning, lunch options during closure

From: Dr. Jim Roberts, BCSC Superintendent

Students & Parents of BCSC,

Spanish Translation here:…/1JNJUHrGkzY5ZC4lgquRtJhLbsif…/edit

This pandemic will be difficult for our students, families, and community. Not only are we facing the threat of serious illness, but the potential loss of income threatens housing and food security for many in our community. While we must take necessary steps to protect public health, the teachers and staff members at BCSC are committed to doing everything possible to address these difficulties for our families.

Below is an update on the steps that BCSC is taking to protect the health of our community while ensuring that students have access to the resources they need:

Access to School Buildings:

  • For students/parents needing items (electronic devices, books/materials, medications, etc.) from school buildings, each school can be accessed from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Monday, March 23 and Tuesday, March 24 OR by scheduling an appointment by contacting the main office of the building. Individuals must enter through Door 1 only as all other doors will be locked.
  • The Administration Building (812-376-4234), Information Services Center (812-376-4513), and Transportation & Maintenance Building (812-376-4246) will remain open by appointment only during the school closure.

Resources for eLearning:

  • Teachers will post lesson plan information through BCSC’s learning management system, itslearning, and will be available to interact virtually with students from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day. Because kindergarten students are not assigned a BCSC electronic device, kindergarten teachers will communicate activities to families for students to complete.
  • Students without a device can retrieve one by visiting their school building between 7:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on either Monday, March 23 or Tuesday, March 24.
  • Students with damaged devices should contact the Information Services Center (812- 376-4513), 2650 Home Avenue, between 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. to request receipt of a loaner device.
  • Families without reliable internet access can do the following:
  • Submit an application to request a wireless internet hotspot via this LINK or call 812-418-0252. (Currently, there are a limited number of wireless hotspots available.)
  • Comcast internet provider is offering a free internet essentials package for those who qualify. Visit for additional information.
  • Visit the Westside Community Church, 124 Tipton Lakes Boulevard, between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays.
  • Additional information about how eLearning days are utilized can be found at
  • Anyone (students, parents, staff members) with additional questions regarding eLearning should call our hotline at 812-418-0252 or email [email protected].

Nutritional Resources:

  • Meals will be available to students each day between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. at Clifty Creek Elementary School, Schmitt Elementary School, Smith Elementary School, and Taylorsville Elementary School in a “grab and go” format to minimize person to person interaction.
  • Meals will include both lunch and breakfast items and are free to children under the age of 18. Adults may purchase lunches at these sites for $3.50. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
  • Meals will also be available, via BCSC school buses, at the following locations from 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. within the county:
    • Administration Building = Corner of 12 th St. & Cottage Ave.
    • Central Middle School Parking Lot
    • Southside Elementary School Parking Lot
    • Columbus East High School Parking Lot
    • Elizabethtown Library Parking Lot
    • Pence Apartments
    • Heritage Heights Addition (near main office)
    • Candlelight Village
    • Driftside Park
    • Cambridge Square Apartments
    • Mt. Healthy Elementary School Parking Lot
    • 9th Street Park
  • Anyone with questions regarding our distribution of meals can contact our Food Service Department at 812-376-4462.

Other Resources:

  • -School personnel are ready and eager to take phone calls to help meet the needs of students. These individuals can be reached by calling students’ school buildings and include principals, counselors, deans, and mental health providers.
  • For additional information not addressed in this statement, please contact the BCSC Administration Building at 812-376-4234.
  • Our schools will continue to serve our students, families, and community as well as possible. We miss our kids and families and want to hear from you. If you need assistance, call our schools or the BCSC Crisis Hotline (812) 379-7710. If you need immediate assistance, please call 911.
  • Although we are officially closed through Friday, April 3, 2020, the evolving nature of this pandemic may result in the need for us to make additional tough decisions. As more information is gathered, we pledge to remain in constant communication as we work to meet the needs of this community.
  • We look forward to welcoming you back into our schools as soon as it is safe and appropriate to do so!

Philharmonic cancels concerts

The Columbus Indiana Philharmonic announces the cancellation of the following events due to the COVID-19 outbreak:

  1. March 28, 2020 “Forrest and Brahms” concert
  2. April 25, 2020 “Tchaikovsky” concert

“The health and safety of our patrons, musicians and staff are our primary concern in navigating through this most difficult and unprecedented situation,” said Philharmonic Board President, Barry Turner. “We are committed to taking the necessary actions to protect our community as a whole. And therefore, we are cancelling our next 2 concerts: “Forrest & Brahms” on March 28 and “Tchaikovsky” on April 25. The CIP has made this decision for the welfare of our patrons, artists and staff. AND in support of and compliance with our community’s leadership efforts to reduce the risk for everyone.”

The Philharmonic office will be open to take calls at 812-376-2638 beginning Tuesday, March 24, 2020. This will give office staff time to prepare for offering two options to those who are holding tickets for these concerts.

The two options are:

  1. Exchange for a gift certificate to be used in the 2020-21 or 2021-22 Philharmonic seasons
  2. Offering the ticket cost(s) as a tax-deductible donation to the Philharmonic.

Tracy Haddad, Interim Executive Director of the Phil said, “It is your continued support through this crisis that will enable the CIP to continue to fulfill our mission – to bring the joy of quality music to the community. Our passion to fulfill this mission is what has encouraged us to ask: If you are tickets holders for the March 28th or April 25th concerts, would you please consider your ticket(s) a donation to the organization? Your decision to do so can be very impactful on our organization at this time. We truly appreciate your consideration of this donation to the CIP!”

This is a challenging and unprecedented situation. The Philharmonic will continue to monitor updates and recommendations from state, local, and federal leaders. Please visit for concert updates and the latest information on our health and safety protocol.

Thrive Alliance updates virus-related changes

To prevent the spread of COVID-19 among older adults and people with disabilities, as well as our employees, associates and families, Thrive Alliance announces the following actions:

  • Office closure: Thrive Alliance is open for business; however all of our offices are closed to public until further notice in compliance with guidance provided by local, state and federal government officials.
  • In-person meetings: All in-person meetings are canceled until further notice, including walk-in appointments.
  • Care Management: The state of Indiana has approved that client assessments may be conducted by phone rather than in person. While care managers will not be in client homes, in-person appointments are being conducted by phone.
  • Aging & Disability Resource Center: Our call center staff members are still answering phones and are able to help callers assess existing or anticipated long-term care needs for themselves or a loved one.
  • Nutrition: Thrive Alliance congregate meal sites have been closed per directions from the Indiana Department of Health until further notice.
  • Outreach Activities and Events: All Thrive Alliance outreach events scheduled during March and April are being cancelled or postponed until further notice. We will assess the need to make any changes to activities and events schedule beyond that time frame over the intervening weeks. Dementia Friends in-person training sessions throughout the state are suspended. All Thrive Alliance Wellness classes are suspended until further notice.

These policies will begin immediately and remain in effect until further notice.
For information, call (866) 644-6407 (toll free) or go online at

Jennings County government buildings to close

In response to the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), all county buildings are now closed to the general public in our efforts to lessen the spread of this virus. If you have urgent business with our offices, our employees are here and ready to help via phone and email. If you are unsure of what office you need assistance from, please contact the Auditor’s Office at 812-352-3016 and they will be happy to assist you. T

This change is in compliance with federal, state, and local policies and is being implemented for the well-being of both our employees and the general public. Thank you for your understanding, patience and cooperation during this time. Updates will be posted on our website at

North Vernon prepares for virus outbreak


Dear Fellow Citizens:

We’re experiencing extraordinary times.

Together we will get through this pandemic and be better neighbors for it.

I ask all of you to follow the well-publicized guidelines suggested by the World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control, the office of the President and that of Governor Holcomb.

With regard to the city I have met with the heads of all city departments. After a full and complete discussion regarding the challenges before us the following matters were resolved:

  1.  Each department head will attempt to economize the use of staff in order to avoid contamination between employees.
  2. City buildings will be closed except for emergency purposes. Each department head will decide upon the hours and when and under what circumstances the doors will be open to the public.
  3. City council meetings will be expedited in that non-essential matters are suspended until further notice and only matters requiring payment of claims and exigent circumstances will be considered at city meetings.
  4. All city facilities which have heretofore been available for rental to the public are closed and such rental agreements are suspended.
  5. All city sponsored athletic and sports activities through the park department, including the golf leagues, are hereby suspended until further notice.
  6. All city sponsored events which are of a social nature and non-essential are hereby cancelled and suspended.

Your cooperation with city officials and employees is highly appreciated. Lets us all “love thy neighbor as thyself”.