What happens if a student tests positive for COVID-19?

Cases in schools nationwide prompt protocol questions
Posted at 10:26 PM, Aug 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-05 23:27:00-04

Some school reopenings are already underway across the country.

"The risk isn't zero, but the expression of the virus in kids is just very different than adults," said Dr. Jackson Griggs, CEO of the Family Health Center.

The beginning of the school year has proven it may be difficult to avoid COVID-19 on campus. In Georgia, a second grader tested positive for the virus after attending the first day of school, similar to a situation in Indiana last week.

As for the plan for if COVID-19 hits Central Texas classrooms? Waco Mayor Kyle Deaver says the schools will be required to report any positive cases to parents of children in that school as well as the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District.

"Schools report positive cases to their local health district, and upon receiving that information, the health district conducts a case investigation, does contract tracing," said Deaver.

However, two days ago, Governor Greg Abbott told 25 News contact tracing is not working fast enough in the Lone Star State.

"There's so many people testing positive right now," said Abbott. "It is not an efficient way to go about the process of using contact tracing. The goal hopefully is that as we continue to see improvements in the State of Texas, as we see a decline in the number of people testing positive, we will be able to get back into a position where contact tracing will play a more valuable role."

Texas Education Agency officials advise parents to not send students to campus if their children have COVID-19 symptoms or have a confirmed COVID-19 case.

TEA officials also say parents may opt to have their students receive remote instruction if their child has had close contact with an individual who is lab-confirmed with COVID-19 until the 14-day incubation period has passed.