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50 COVID positives, 167 new quarantines over past week in Madison schools

50 COVID positives, 167 new quarantines over past week in Madison schools

La Follette HS 091421 07-10072021152519 (copy)

Students wear masks as they move through the hallways during a passing period at La Follette High School.

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After back-to-back weeks of more than 80 new COVID-19 cases and 400-plus quarantines among students and staff, the Madison Metropolitan School District saw smaller increases in each over the past week.

According to the district’s case tracker, updated each Wednesday morning, the past week included 50 new positives and 167 new quarantines. The count does not separate student and staff cases.

The new numbers bring the total since Aug. 18 to 382 positive cases and 1,808 quarantines. Of those, 139 and 589, respectively, have occurred within the past 14 days.

The district has more than 26,000 students and 3,000 staff members.

District health and safety protocols require students and staff considered a “close contact” to someone who tests positive to quarantine. Close contacts are those who were within six feet of a COVID-positive person for 15 or more minutes within a 24-hour period, though the policy makes exceptions for those who are vaccinated and allows students to be as close as three feet and not be considered a close contact as long as both were properly wearing masks.

At the elementary school level, the biggest jump came at Schenk Elementary School, which went from 14 positives and 11 quarantines on the year as of last week to 19 and 32, respectively, as of today. Eight of the school’s 19 positives and 28 of its 32 quarantines have come in the past 14 days. Schenk had 392 students last school year.

Sennett Middle School went from fewer than six positives — the district keeps numbers of six and below general for privacy purposes — and 48 quarantines as of last week to fewer than six positives and 72 quarantines as of this week. Sennett had 648 students last year.

Among high schools, East has five more positive cases but just three more quarantines, bringing its totals on the year to 32 and 166, while West has two more positive cases but 20 new quarantines, totaling 14 and 301 on the year. East’s enrollment last year was 1,697 while West’s was 2,164.

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