District: 31 students, staff at Georgetown Middle School have been quarantined

VIDEO: District: 31 students, staff at Georgetown Middle School have been quarantined

GEORGETOWN COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - The Georgetown County School District says 14 students and 17 staff members are in quarantine from Georgetown Middle School. According to the District’s Covid-19 Dashboard, one student and one staff member tested positive for coronavirus.

The 31 people in quarantine from the middle school were in close contact with someone who has the virus. The number of teachers who are part of the staff in quarantine was not made available.

The school district is in a hybrid model of learning where students go to school for part of the week and learn remotely.

The district’s Executive Director for Safety and Risk Management, Alan Walters, says instruction has not been interrupted but modified in some cases.

Walter says they have a combination of substitute teachers or other staff filling in for the teachers that are in quarantine. He also says some teachers are teaching virtually from home while their students are in the classroom.

Parent Susie Green says she has a child who is a student at Georgetown Middle.

“For me, my kids are virtual, but I still receive the emails stating that your child may have been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19,” Green said. “I receive at least four or five of those between the high school and middle school a week.”

She says one of her children has a compromised immune system.

“If you’re having that amount of increase of quarantine individuals of getting COVID-19, you have to step back take a moment reassess and see what else can be done,”

Grandparent Wesley Gibson says he’s concerned about the spread of COVID-19 in schools with cases rising in South Carolina.

He would like to see learning return to remote full-time.

“I raise my grandchildren,” Gibson said. “One of them has an underlying condition, and I really think that we should reassess.”

Gibson is also the spokesperson for Citizen’s for Progress in Georgetown County, a community group focused on improving the county.

“The whole school should be in quarantine, just think of how many people they contacted that day or those days,” Gibson said. “COVID is running rampant. SC is in the red.”

The Georgetown County School District released the following statement saying in part:

“We do not identify who is out as the result of a positive test or those having to quarantine as the result of being a close contact of someone who tested positive other than as staff or student. We notified DHEC and conducted contact tracing in conjunction with them. Letters were sent to all parents and a meeting was held with the staff Friday afternoon. Where some people seem to get confused is that a close contact of a close contact is not required to quarantine, so that people who were around an administrator or teacher who is a close contact would not be required to quarantine. GCSD was able to meet staffing requirements for the school to operate on a normal schedule today.”

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