As some schools received green lights for reopening, a week later after one opened in northern Georgia school district, above 800 staff and school students got notified to quarantine.
A week before this, the Cherokee County School District which is situated 44 miles north of Atlanta, asked around 20 people to self-quarantine immediately after one 2nd-grader was discovered to have caught the novel coronavirus and tested positive for it. The child contracted the virus after only the first day of school.
Soon it was found that the number grew quickly and by Monday night alone the school made sure to notify 826 students to limit exposure and quarantine themselves promptly. The district also created a list for those that should be in quarantine.
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The district that is home to 42,000 students listed about 40 cases from 19 elementary, high and middle schools. Currently, it is not known whether these cases are all those who tested positive for coronavirus or have some people who were exposed to those that were infected such as other infected students or staff.
It is known that the district does a routine check-up for contact tracing those who have tested positive for coronavirus or have been exposed to people who have the virus.
A spokeswoman on Tuesdays addressed concerns on Tuesday saying before school reopenings the district had been cautious about coronavirus infections among both staff and students and that they also worried that they could happen.
Barbara Jacoby who is the spokeswoman said this is why a system of contact tracing, notifying, and placing those who test positive in quarantine is so important for the entire community’s awareness. She says the district is not shying away from placing people in quarantine including those who were exposed to verified patients.
It is interesting to note the Cherokee County schools have not made masks mandatory for teachers and students and have instead offered mere recommendations or them to be worn.
In a photograph posted last week which has since then gone viral shows students standing crammed together with their shoulders touching and no masks insight. After viewing the photograph, Superintendent Brian V. Hightower sent a letter to parents pointing out how the image was proof that children in the district were not following preventative rules and were not wearing face coverings.
Hightower wrote the series of photographs in and out of schools raises concerns over whether or not these children understand the grave situation at hand if masks are not worn diligently. While upon investigation it was found that most do wear masks on a routine basis, it is still however important to serve reminders to students regarding the importance of masks.
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Hightower also reminded families last week about how uncertain the situation was and that the district might not be able to keep schools open considering the dangers brought by the pandemic.
He emphasizes how working together as a community now is as important as ever during this difficult time.