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Howard schools’ upcoming Baltimore, Johns Hopkins APL field trips canceled due to coronavirus outbreak

The Howard County Public School System has canceled the upcoming weekend Future Business Leaders of America field trip to Baltimore due to concerns related to the new coronavirus, according to emails sent Wednesday by various county high schools.

The school system was not sponsoring the FBLA field trip, an email sent to River Hill High School’s community said.

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If a student or parent decides to attend the trip “as a private, personal decision, they will assume full and complete responsibility for the health and safety of the student and for any individuals who accompany the student,” the email states.

Howard’s countywide middle school debate scheduled for Friday at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory has been canceled. The lab in Laurel has canceled all events for external organizations until further notice.

On Tuesday, Howard schools Superintendent Michael Martirano canceled all out-of-state field trips and athletic events, including those in Washington, D.C., through the end of the school year. All official out-of-state travel for school system employees also is canceled.

Already approved in-state field trips are being reassessed on a case-by-case basis.

The school system “is not responsible for any financial loss related to the cancellation of a field trip; however, please know that our staff is working diligently with our vendors over the next several days to attempt to secure refunds for canceled field trips,” according to its website.

Howard schools cannot provide refunds without receiving refunds from individual vendors.

The county also this week announced the suspension of all out-of-state travel for county employees until at least mid-April due to coronavirus.

There are 12 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Maryland, state officials confirmed Wednesday night. The cases are in Baltimore, Montgomery, Prince George’s and Harford counties.

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A part-time Anne Arundel resident in her 70s also tested positive for coronavirus Wednesday. The woman lives part-time in Montana, and the case will be assigned to that state.

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