UPDATE: Thursday 1/13 — McDonald County R-1 School District will be closed due to illness Friday, January 14. Click here for a full list of closings in the Four States.

The original story published Wednesday evening follows:

ANDERSON, Mo. — While many school districts in the Four States have closed due to rising cases of COVID-19 and other illnesses, one that is staying open is the McDonald County R-1 School District.

Officials say the situation remains fluid, but cases are currently lower than other schools that have had to pause in-person instruction.

School leaders credit the district’s substitute teacher pool with their performance during this wave of infections.

“Our staff so far has done a fantastic job of filling in and making sure those kids have somebody in the classroom,” said Ken Schutten, media communications coordinator with the McDonald County R-1 School District. “We’re having reading coaches cover classrooms, we’re having our paraprofessional staff cover some classrooms, we’ve even had principals to fill in classrooms.”

Schutten says the district’s goal is to continue providing in-person classes while balancing the health and safety aspect.