Policy requires students who are close contacts to wear masks to learn in-person.
FORT SCOTT, Kan. – On Monday evening, in a four to three vote, the Fort Scott school board voted to change their return to school plan.
The change makes it so students who have close contact with a positive COVID-19 case to stay in school, as long as they wear a mask.
In a release from the district, it explains that the recommendations did not come from the superintendent. If a student was sent home as a close contact on October 9th, they could return to school, if parents want them to.
It also explains that if parents want to change their student’s learning plan, they can do so.
But the release didn’t explain why the change was made. We reached out to each member of the school board, but Lynette Jackson, James Wood, and Gary Billionis declined an interview. We did not hear back from the superintendent.
So we talked to parents to see what they think of the change.
“I’m cool with it. I mean, if the kid doesn’t have any symptoms why make them go home?” says parent Debbie Isenhart.
“I think they’re trying to do what’s best. And I think that kids need to be in school, but if they’re wearing their mask and trying to keep their distance, I think it’s good,” says parent Doug Potter.
But not everyone feels the same. Some people think the new policy could cause the virus to spread.
“Do they not see we are already in crisis? Hospitals in our area are full already. Why would they do this?” says Brandi Palmer on Facebook.
SEK Multi-County Health Department Administrator Rebecca Johnson says the department will be following guidance from the KDHE and state statutes.
According to guidance from KDHE that was updated in July, students who have been exposed to a positive case can still attend school in-person but have to follow quarantine outside of school. That is, as long as the school follows specific requirements.