COLUMBUS, Ks. — Classes resume at Park Elementary in Columbus today following the loss of one of their instructors.

Paraprofessional Kayauna Zabel passed away on February 9th from her complications with influenza b and pneumonia.

The school shut down on Thursday and Friday last week to be decontaminated so students could return today.

As the district mourns the loss of the teachers’ assistant, the main goal is to also prevent the spread of the illness.

Brian Smith, Superintendent, Columbus School District, said, “We’re going in to clean all of our facilities and everything. If nothing else, we slowed down the flu, the progression of the flu in our district. You always want to put safety first.”

Counselors will be available on campus this week for students and staff.

Smith adds their thoughts are with Kayauna’s brother who is still at KU Medical Center for similar symptoms as his sister.