NewsSarasota, Manatee County


Coronavirus cases reported at 3 Manatee County schools, official confirms

The district's first day of school was on Monday, August 17
Posted at 5:34 PM, Aug 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-20 12:49:13-04

MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. -- New coronavirus cases are being reported at three schools in Manatee County, officials confirmed with ABC Action News.

These COVID-19 cases were reported the first week students and teachers returned to class for brick-and-mortar education.

The district says the cases were at Ballard Elementary School and Parrish Community High School. Another case was reported at Rowlett Academy for Arts and Communication.

The families were notified of the new cases through an email and voice message. Manatee County Schools is sending people home for two weeks if they were in direct contact with those infected by the virus.

Below is the email sent to families of Ballard Elementary School students:

Parrish Community High School released the following email to families:

A district spokesperson sent the following statement:

"In each case, the Principal of the school contacted our District Operations Center which is staffed with Florida Department of Health in Manatee County staff and School District Safety and Security personnel. As the Connect-Ed messages below reflect, a contact tracing investigation was conducted at each school by a Florida Department of Health epidemiologist to determine Direct Exposures to the confirmed case. In addition, additional sanitization efforts were conducted at each school."

Rowlett Academy for Arts and Communication Principal Chuck Fradley sent out this statement to parents, guardians and employees:

"I am sending this message to inform you that the Florida Department of Health has confirmed a case of COVID-19 associated with our school. Any person who had contact with the confirmed case will be notified and will self-isolate from school for 14 days from the last date of known exposure. In reviewing this case, it has been determined that the confirmed case had limited exposure to distinct portions of our campus. These areas will be closed for the next 2-5 days for intensive cleaning and disinfecting. The remainder of the campus will continue to go through cleaning and disinfecting measures regularly. Due to HIPPA, ADA, and FERPA privacy restrictions, we cannot discuss or release any additional details associated with this case. The faculty and staff at Rowlett have prepared for this situation and are following our safety protocols. Please continue to monitor your family’s health and keep children home that are exhibiting any COVID type symptoms. Thank you for your diligence."