Sandrock, alternative school staffs will be required to wear masks this week |

Sandrock, alternative school staffs will be required to wear masks this week

Sandrock Elementary School has students wearing masks this week as positivity rates spiked.
Cuyler Meade / Craig Press

Teachers and staff will have to wear masks at Sandrock Elementary School and the alternative High School staff through Friday as a result of higher COVID-19 positivity rates in the two buildings. Currently, 6.4% of the Moffat County School District is under quarantine.

According to the school district COVID-19 dashboard that was released on Friday evening, Sandrock Elementary currently has a 2.3% positivity rate, and 9.3% are quarantined. In the school district’s reopening plan, a school building must stay under 2% in order for staff and students to not wear masks. Once that rate exceeds 2%, staff will be required to wear masks. After it rises past 3%, all students, staff and visitors will wear masks.

“The amount of students in quarantine are much lower this year than last, due to new CDPHE guidelines for quarantines,” Superintendent Scott Pankow said in a statement.

The alternative school’s positivity rate is 2.6%, and 2.6% are quarantined. Currently, Craig Middle School has the highest percentage of its population in quarantine with 12.6% being sent home, but the positivity rate is relatively low at 0.8%. The high school has a 1.3% positivity rate, and 4.9% are quarantined.

The early childhood center, Sunset Elementary and the Middle School all have positivity rates under 1%. Ridgeview currently sits at a 0% positivity rate, but there are still 0.3% quarantined.

Maybell Elementary School currently operates on special circumstances since its population is so small. According to the dashboard, if one person at Maybell tests positive, adults will begin wearing masks. Two cases from different households will result in everyone wearing masks.

Currently, children under 12 are not approved to receive any kind of dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccinated students and staff who disclose their status with the school district do not have to quarantine when exposed to COVID-19. Those who are quarantined to in-person learning after seven days if they test negative after day five.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is conducting contact tracing for the school district using seating charts, and nurses at the district are conducting optional weekly serial testing for those who opt in. Students and staff who participate in testing will not have to quarantine if exposed to the virus, and if 70% of the unvaccinated population gets tested every week, then those who are asymptomatic will not have to quarantine. The dashboard indicates that threshold has not been reached.

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