Huntsville City Schools implementing contact tracing for COVID-19 cases

The change starts Monday and will last until further notice.

Posted: Aug 19, 2021 7:09 PM
Updated: Aug 19, 2021 7:18 PM

Starting Monday, Huntsville City Schools is going back to implementing their contact tracing and isolating within schools when they test positive for COVID-19.

WAAY-31 spoke with a nurse from the school system about the change.

The Huntsville City School System told us their main goal is to keep everyone within their buildings as safe as possible.

It all came down to this as COVID cases are on the rise.

"Our goal is to keep school open. We have to look at layers of mitigation layers that we can put in place so we can prevent our schools to be closed," said Jana Mason, a monitor nurse within Huntsville City Schools.

She told us these changes going into effect on Monday are important and there's a few things to note:

If a student tests positive for COVID, then he or she will isolate​​ from others and be sent home.

If a student was in close-contact with a positive case, then that student will be excluded​​ from campus altogether.

Everyone can come back once they test negative and have no more symptoms.

"Individuals who are deemed a close-contact to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or is presumed positive for COVID-19 from all school campuses and activities," said Mason.

Mason told us students will be out of school for 14 days and teachers and staff for 10 days.

She says teachers can come out 4 days early because they can maintain 6-feet distance from presumed positive people for more than 15 minutes.

Meaning, they don't have to isolate anymore, but most students cannot do this.

"We see this as an opportunity to protect everyone and we feel that this is one of the best layers of prevention right now so, I know it's frustrating and I appreciate the support of our parents," said Mason.

Aside from this, Mason also told us HCS will be going back to using their COVID dashboard as well.

Now, ​the dashboard will be up and running at some point next week.

It'll only​​ show the amount of positive cases but, it'll be updated weekly.

The school system will still be doing mandatory masking, social distancing and constant sanitizing.

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