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Students Return to School Despite COVID Fears


Anxiety, fear, concern, anger, confusion is some of the reactions parents have had since the beginning of the school year due to the outbreak of COVID cases in some of the schools.

Imperial Valley schools returned to in-person learning in August after being out due to the pandemic. However, there have been reports of students and staff testing positive for COVID. The schools are required to notify parents that a student may have been in contact with someone that has COVID and should immediately quarantine. 

This has caused concern among parents on how the schools are taking their safety measures while others blame parents for sending their kids to school knowing they had some of the symptoms. 

Regardless of the school district, the letters sent to parents are worded the same way. The District informs that they initiated contact tracing and will be notifying the students that were in contact with the person who tested positive and asked them to contact their medical provider immediately. 

“We will update you with any additional information should the need arise. Please continue to follow health guidelines and monitor your child for symptoms or illness every day. Send your child to your healthcare provider and keep them home,” said Rockwood Elementary School Principal, Lisa Fuller in a written statement. 

On social media, the reaction of parents has been very loud especially in a Facebook group that covers COVID in schools. 

“If they are supposed to go back to school to get a better education, how are children who tested positive for COVID and are quarantined?  Do they just stop studying for 2 weeks?  Do they zoom in with their class?” One parent asked. 

Another person defended teachers and school administrators and blamed parents for not taking precautions. 

“Everyone blaming the teachers and school staff for Kids testing positive and not informing parents right away are stupid! You knew the risks of sending your kids to school. If another parent sent their child to school with a runny nose and the teacher didn’t notice, it’s not the teacher’s fault! It’s the parent’s fault for sending that child like that to school. If you’re so worried about your kids getting sick keep them home! Unless you’re indoors 24/7 completely locked in without any contact with the outside you’re still at risk!” 

Due to the circulating and highly contagious Delta variant, CDC recommends universal indoor masking by all students (age 2 and older), staff, teachers, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status.

In addition to universal indoor masking, CDC recommends schools maintain at least 3 feet of physical distance between students within classrooms to reduce transmission risk. When it is not possible to maintain a physical distance of at least 3 feet, such as when schools cannot fully re-open while maintaining these distances, it is especially important to layer multiple other prevention strategies, such as screening testing.

Screening testing, ventilation, Hand washing, and respiratory etiquette, staying home when sick and getting tested, contact tracing in combination with quarantine and isolation, and cleaning and disinfection are also important layers of prevention to keep schools safe.

Students, teachers, and staff should stay home when they have signs of any infectious illness and be referred to their healthcare provider for testing and care.

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