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Students missing in-person instruction due to several quarantines

Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 5:47 PM CST
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BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Some Bay District Schools students are spending more time at home than in the classroom without ever testing positive for COVID-19.

“All the kids have been quarantined at least once,” Parent Kira Bacot said.

Moms like Kira are frustrated.

“My oldest daughter who is in 11th grade has been quarantined four times since November,” Kira said.

Quarantines are making her kids miss school. Her daughter has missed weeks from Mosley High School. She said it’s impacting her grades.

”Her grade point average just for one ‘F,’ it was a 4.2 and now it’s a 3.7,” Kira said.

Stephanie Fernandes sees the same pattern with her ninth-grade son at Deane Bozeman.

“Now that he’s quarantined and they no longer have BayLink, he basically was given the work that was to be done that week on his Focus, and there is no one to teach him,” Stephanie said.

Despite multiple quarantines, these moms said their children never caught COVID-19.

According to data from Bay District Schools, between February 1 and 19, there were 132 new COVID-19 cases. With that, 805 students and staff quarantined.

On February 1, Bay District Schools recorded 591 COVID-19 cases to date.
On February 1, Bay District Schools recorded 591 COVID-19 cases to date.(WJHG/WECP)
On February 19, Bay District Schools recorded 723 COVID-19 cases to date.
On February 19, Bay District Schools recorded 723 COVID-19 cases to date.(WJHG/WECP)

”The vast majority of those students are coming back not positive,” Bay District Schools School Board Chairman Steve Moss said.

Moss sees the issue.

Right now, kids are quarantined if they’ve spent time within six feet of an infected person.

Moss said they’re considering ways to adjust those restrictions.

“If we do, indeed, enforce the three feet from a quarantine standpoint, there’s a lot less students we have to send home because of the close contact,” Moss said.

For now, principals are trying to find ways to keep kids’ grades from falling.

“If you feel frustrated, reach out to us. Reach out to your principal at your school, the guidance counselor, those individual teachers,” Mosley High School Principal Brian Bullock said.

Bullock also said many teachers are still efforting live lessons themselves.

However, if a student is still struggling, there is available help.

“We have tutoring that’s available for all our course subject areas. So if a kid does have to, unfortunately, quarantine, we have tutoring going on before school, after school,” Bullock said.

Something parents like Kira and Stephanie are doing, while they hope for a solution that keeps their kids from missing any more school.

”Our kids’ future is on the line,” Kirs said.

At Tuesday’s upcoming school board meeting, Superintendent Husfelt is expected to propose the contact-tracing guidelines change from six to three feet.

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