Blaine schools sees surge in cases, some classes moved online


The Blaine school district had 118 reported Covid-19 cases last week between all its schools, and with the influx of cases, some classes are temporarily being moved to remote learning.

Twenty-nine primary school students, 28 elementary school students, 26 middle school students, 33 high school students and two staff members tested positive last week, according to the district dashboard. The week before, starting January 3, had a total of 64 cases. Twenty-seven cases were reported during winter break, from December 20 to January 2.

In September, a total of 96 cases were reported, which had been the district’s record for cases in a month. January has nearly doubled that; the district had 22 more cases than that reported last week.

According to superintendent Christopher Granger’s January 14 message, the district had an “unprecedented number” of staff and students out last week. Because of this, some individual classrooms or cohorts of students were temporarily moved to remote learning.

The school district is working to review and implement new guidance similar to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) new guidance, which recommends isolating for five days if asymptomatic or symptoms resolving followed by five days of wearing a mask. Granger said while the district’s new guidance will be more specific, for many students and staff it will allow them to return to school sooner than previously allowed. However, a negative PCR test is still needed to return to school.

“We want to remind everyone that any student or staff member who has been symptomatic needs a negative PCR test to return to work or school,” Granger wrote.

PCR testing is available for students and staff every school day 10:30-11 a.m. on the north side of the middle school gym, across H Street from the Boys and Girls Club, according to the message. Enter the lot from Mitchell Avenue and proceed north around the gym. 


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