(DENVER) — On Sept. 11, the Colorado Department of Education and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment released joint guidelines based on the most recent science to ensure students and teachers are both protected who decide to make this choice.
The guidelines require “health screening, mask-wearing for all adults and children ages 11 and up, physical distancing, and keeping students in cohorts as much as possible.”
Everyone knows the late summer routine. New clothes, new supplies, a brand new school year. That is until 2020 rang in a new normal for the unforeseeable future. All over Colorado, parents and students had to quickly choose what the next year would look like for them. Many faced the tough choice to take classes online, which can be difficult for some with learning obstacles or take the risk by going in person. Then there are the hybrid students. These students go in person only two days a week and the rest online.
After hospitals and medical facilities, classrooms maintain some of the strictest sanitary requirements. Everyone wants to believe that every place the public interacts with is clean and virus-free, but the reality is that there will always be more risk with more people out and about. Where kids have to go, schools might be the safest place.
As of Sept. 4, The Denver Post haskept an up-to-date list of school outbreaks. While the highest recorded positive outbreaks in one school is six, on average, most schools are only having one outbreak all together. While they might be having 80 people in quarantine, they do this to be as safe as possible. Experts also say that the correlation to outbreaks in schools will reflect more about the overall COVID-19 prevention and not to the responses of schools.
“I think the set up keeps us well protected from the virus,” said Karyssa Gosney, a junior attending high school in Bayfield, Colorado. “We have to clean our desks after each class with disinfectant spray and wear masks all day. We sit six feet away from each other, or more in some classes, “ Gosney said. “Since there is the option to go online, fewer people at school and last names split us up [by day]. Wednesday is a disinfecting day.”
“My largest class has nine people with this setup. I believe it is the least amount of exposure I will receive in any public space.” Gosney said. “School is probably one of the most sanitary spaces in Bayfield right now.”