The McNairy County School System is seeing significant numbers of students and staff quarantined due to Covid-19 exposure, according to data collected over the first week of the school year.
Approximately 150 students and employees are now in quarantine across every county school. With seven students and three staff members having tested positive for Covid-19, the quarantine-to-positive ratio for McNairy County Schools currently averages 15 quarantines to every positive test.
At this time, no students have reportedly been hospitalized.
Scenarios in which entire classes must be quarantined have primarily occurred among younger children with a greater inclination toward physical interaction. In most cases, possible exposures are diligently contact traced in order to keep as many students and teachers as possible attending school in person.
“It is really similar to the situation we were in in the spring, so we do have some experience on how to deal with it,” Martin assessed. “It is certainly not experience that we necessarily are glad we’ve had to come to terms with, but we are proud that we do have some groundwork laid in knowing how to cope and how to manage.”
An update dated August 9 is now available on the “McNairy County Schools” Facebook page. In keeping with CDC guidelines, the school board recommends that any person exposed to Covid-19 remain at home for at least ten days and watch for symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath or fever of 100.4°F or above. Individuals who lack symptoms and have been vaccinated or exposed to Covid-19 in the past 90 days are not required to quarantine.
The Bethel Springs Elementary School football team is currently the only sports and/or extracurricular group of which all members have been quarantined. Sixteen players had been in some kind of close proximity to one player who tested positive. Although no football jamboree will occur this year, Terry Moore, principal of Bethel Springs Elementary School, hopes that the team will reconvene August 16 in preparation for a game against Middleton August 19.
Superintendent Martin expressed his conviction that, outside of any positive cases or quarantines, the school year is off to an admirable start. Regardless of this success, Martin added that all McNairy Countians should play a part in combating the new surge of infections, especially getting immunized against Covid-19.
“We really need to be aware of what is going on. I don’t think we are out of the woods by any stretch of the imagination,” Martin insisted. “I have lived here my whole life and seen our communities jump through hoops. If someone gets sick or a house burns, people make an effort to help their fellow men and women. It is hard for me to understand how one can get a vaccine to help protect their fellow citizens, but he or she does not take the shot. I lose sight of how we can be such a giving community in some circumstances, but not so giving in others.”