Multiple COVID-19 positives at Eagle County schools result in more quarantines
There have been 8 incidents since November 10 that have sent 121 students and 18 staff to quarantine
Since Nov. 10, Eagle County Schools has reported eight incidents at area schools that have resulted in COVID-19 notifications going home to families. A combination of 121 students and 18 staff have been issued quarantine orders among all 7,000 or so students and staff in the district in that span.
Positives have been identified at Avon Elementary School, the afterschool program at Avon Elementary School, Battle Mountain High School, Edwards Early Learning Center, Eagle Valley High School, and Homestake Peak School.
One student at Edwards Early Learning Center will quarantine due to close contact with a positive case at the Avon Elementary afterschool program. Additionally, one school principal is quarantining due to a positive case in their household.
Public health notifies the school district of a positive case with ties to the schools, either as a student or staff member. Working collaboratively, public health, and the district pull relevant schedules, seating charts, and begin interviewing the positive case and those who might have been in close contact with them while infectious. A careful list is developed of those students or staff who need to quarantine to contain the potential spread. Those needing to quarantine are called and emailed promptly, including in the evenings and over weekends.
Quarantine orders protect the broader population from those who may be contagious, asymptomatic, or most likely to develop symptoms. So far, public health has identified one incident where transmission could have occurred at a school and between teacher and student. In that instance, the teacher was asymptomatic and was not confirmed positive until after a student tested positive.
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As positive cases mount, the challenge of keeping schools operational in-person also climbs. Staff members may be out due to a positive case in their household, their child being on quarantine, or because they are positive or on quarantine themselves. Systemwide staff absences can strain the district’s ability to remain open. Anticipate more cohort, grade level, and school-level transitions to remote learning as the community enters the new orange high-risk phase on the state’s dial.