Denver Public Schools has had 44 staff members and 22 students test positive for COVID-19 in August so far.
Most schools started back with on-site classes Monday. In the first two days this week, the district had 18 positive cases — 10 students and eight staff members, said Will Jones, a district spokesman. The 18 cases are part of the total 66 DPS cases so far this new school year. Some schools started back prior to Monday.
The DPS nursing services team has been tracking the data, Jones said.
“Because of the nature of this situation, we will react as needed. We are consulting with public health partners,” Jones said. “So far so good, as far as keeping out students in the classroom.”
The school district requires students, teachers, school staff and visitors to wear masks inside buildings and on buses, regardless of their vaccination status. The district has 13,900 employees — of which nearly 4,900 are teachers — and about 90,000 students.
If a student or staff member is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or has been in close contact with a confirmed or suspected case, they’re instructed to notify their schools’ COVID-19 coordinators, according to DPS protocol. There are two coordinators at every school: the school nurse and a staffer chosen by school administrators. Coordinators make decisions about whether students or staff should quarantine or isolate, and for how long.
STEM School Highlands Ranch
Several students at the STEM School Highlands Ranch have either tested positive for COVID-19, are presumed positive or have pending COVID-19 tests.
The school is working with the Tri-County Health Department to investigate and manage an outbreak of COVID-19, STEM said Tuesday on its website.
“In collaboration with TCHD, we have had to make the decision to move our second-grade students to virtual learning for tomorrow, Wednesday, as we continue to investigate this situation,” STEM said in statement to school families.
School officials will reach out Wednesday with “further quarantine directions for those considered potentially exposed.
“As our number of positive and presumed-positive COVID cases continue to increase, we could have to transition our remaining grades to virtual learning for a 14-day period, per TCHD orders,” school officials said.
Families of elementary students at STEM were told to “prepare for the possibility of transitioning to virtual learning.”
STEM will not be conducting contract tracing and will not be requiring quarantining, other than the COVID-positive student, the school said Monday. “We are asking families to keep any student home who is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.”
On Monday, STEM School announced that all sixth-grade students will remain in remote learning through Aug. 30, after students tested positive and several others had symptoms.
Founded in 2011, the STEM school has 500 students in its elementary grades and 1,200 in secondary grades. It’s a charter school in the Douglas County School District with grades K-12.
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