Schools prepare for COVID cases in the classroom again

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Posted at 4:17 PM, Aug 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-11 17:13:15-04

PASCO COUNTY — On the first day of classes, the Pasco County school district reported 47 students and 18 employees who tested positive for COVID-19.

Because those positive with the virus never went to school, no one else is affected.

But the district, like others, will list cases on its website and include a school-by-school breakdown.

Positive cases are sent to the Health Department, which will then work with the school on contact tracing to figure out who needs to be quarantined.

That would usually include other students who were within three feet of the positive case for at least 15 minutes.

Governor Ron Desantis, whose executive order banned mask mandates says he trusts the schools to keep doing what they’ve been doing when it comes to handling positive cases.

“If there’s somebody that’s sick, stay home. I don’t think what we want is them sending home students who maybe just had a glancing contact in the hallway with somebody, which is what when the school’s first started last year, there were some school districts in Georgia if someone had tested positive, anyone who was ever in the same vicinity, same room almost would get sent home. We don’t think that’s the way to go.”

The Pasco School district says they will send home a letter and issue an automated call to let parents of affected students know if their child needs to stay home for 7 days.

But they say they are just the messenger, and that quarantine order comes from the health department.