COVID-19 infection notices almost daily for R-2 schools

By Dave Marner, Managing Editor
Posted 9/15/21

While our neighbors to the north have experienced what appears to be a high number of positive COVID-19 cases in the first weeks of the 2021-22 school year, almost daily notifications from the …

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COVID-19 infection notices almost daily for R-2 schools

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While our neighbors to the north have experienced what appears to be a high number of positive COVID-19 cases in the first weeks of the 2021-22 school year, almost daily notifications from the Gasconade County R-2 School District show school-age students here are also being infected.

The latest notice from R-2 officials came Monday afternoon informing parents of two high school students testing positive for the virus. Both were last on campus Thursday and Friday, according to a notification from Superintendent Dr. Jeri Kay Hardy. There were three close contacts identified from in-school activities and 20 close contacts from an extracurricular activity.

That, apparently, was among the Dutchgirl softball team which has forced the cancellation of a scheduled tournament Saturday in Owensville along with three regularly scheduled games this week. See  Sports for additional coverage starting on page 17.

Notices have been shared with The Republican throughout the pandemic and have continued with the new school year. 

A notice received the afternoon of Sept. 7 from Hardy noted an Owensville Elementary School staffer and two students had tested positive for the coronavirus. A middle school student and a Gerald Elementary student were also listed as positive. The staff member and the OES and GES students had last been in the building Sept. 3. The OMS student had been in school last on Sept. 2.

Hardy’s letter to parents noted 14 students had been identified as close contacts and had been notified. No additional action was required at the time, she noted.

 Also on Sept. 7, Owensville Elementary’s principal, Tricia Ridder, notified parents in a letter that four OES students who were last in attendance Sept. 3 had tested positive. Through contract tracing, no students were asked to quarantine, according to Ridder’s message.

A Sept. 8 letter from Hardy indicated two OES students who were last on campus Sept. 3 had tested positive. Due to physical distancing, no students were identified as close contacts and no further action was required since they were considered secondary contacts.

 Hardy’s letter sent out Thursday, Sept. 9, noted a middle school student who was last on campus Sept. 8 had tested positive. Physical distancing prevented additional students and staff from being asked to quarantine.

Ridder sent out a notice Sept. 9 indicating one OES student who had been in the building that day had tested positive for the virus. Contact tracing identified one student who was asked to quarantine.

And, on Friday, Hardy sent out a notice that two OMS students and two OES students had tested positive. The OMS students were last on campus two days earlier on Sept. 8. The OES students were on campus last Sept. 7 and Sept. 9. Seven students were identified as close contacts and were notified.

School officials in their letters to parents offer the following advice.

“As always it is best to monitor your child for symptoms and if they exhibit any of the COVID-19 symptoms which include cough, shortness of breath, new loss of taste or smell, fever, chills, headache, muscle ache, sore throat, congestion, nausea or diarrhea to keep your child at home, notify the school, and contact your personal health provider,” a recent letter to parents noted.

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