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Social Distancing at the Jr./Sr. High School
Brian Garrard
Friday, October 02, 2020

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “social distancing, also called physical distancing, means keeping a safe space between yourself and other people who are not from your household.  To practice social or physical distancing, stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people who are not from your household in both indoor and outdoor spaces.”  Our current blended learning model at the Jr./Sr. High School supports social distancing recommendations and allows us to eliminate quarantining issues that might arise as a result of a positive Covid case.    Student desks are currently spaced six feet apart to meet social distancing guidelines.  For most of our classrooms, this means that a maximum of nine or ten students can fit in a classroom at one time while maintaining the recommended 6 feet spacing distance between desks.  Two of our larger junior high classrooms can hold 12 students while adhering to the spacing recommendations.  Social distancing in the cafeteria means that a maximum of two students can sit at each table in order to meet the six feet spacing distance resulting in a maximum of 20-22 students safely occupying the cafeteria at one time.  With students maintaining the six foot social distancing recommendation in the classrooms and cafeteria, any positive Covid case would result in only the positive individual being quarantined.  Without this six foot buffer, every student (or teacher) in a classroom who was closer than six feet to an individual who tests positive for Covid-19 would end up being quarantined by the local health department for 14 days.  This could easily result in student quarantine numbers that are in the double digits.  So far this school year, all of our student/staff quarantine scenarios have been from exposures that took place outside of the regular school day.