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Amphitheater has 20 COVID-19 cases across 8 schools, closes two grade-level classes
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Amphitheater has 20 COVID-19 cases across 8 schools, closes two grade-level classes

Two fifth-grade classes at Holaway Elementary in Amphitheater switched to remote learning by necessity after two staff members tested positive for COVID-19. The district had 20 positive cases across eight schools over the weekend.

Amphitheater schools have 20 confirmed COVID-19 cases at eight schools since Friday, Oct. 30, and decided to temporarily close two fifth-grade classes at Holaway Elementary.

The district, which serves about 12,000 students, has cases at the following schools:

  • Nash Elementary — two student cases, no close contacts asked to quarantine;
  • Ironwood High School — eight student cases, number of close contacts still unknown;
  • Holaway Elementary — two staff member cases, number of close contacts still unknown, both fifth-grade classes have shifted to remote instruction;
  • Amphitheater Middle School — three student cases, number of close contacts still unknown;
  • Amphi High School — two student cases, number of close contacts still unknown;
  • Canyon del Oro High School — one student case, number of close contacts still unknown;
  • Coronado K-8 — one staff member case, seven other staff members are quarantined as close contacts;
  • Walker Elementary: one student case, two staff members quarantined as close contacts

The district decided to close the two fifth-grade classes at Holaway after two staff members at the school tested positive. Those students will switch to “remote by necessity” for the next two weeks, said spokeswoman Michelle Valenzuela on Monday, Nov. 2.

Superintendent Todd Jaeger hopes the switch to remote for the fifth-graders at Holaway will be smooth, although abrupt, given that the students and teachers are by now familiar with remote learning.

“I think the most important thing is what we need to do in terms of protecting against and assuring against any further spread,” he said.

Monday afternoon, the district was still in the process of contact tracing with the Pima County Health Department to determine what if any spread had happened in the schools.

Amphitheater notified the Arizona Daily Star about these cases. The public doesn’t know about cases in all schools because many schools and school districts do not announce them publicly, although most will confirm tips the public gives to the Star. Tucson’s largest school district TUSD has told the Star it will not tell the public about any cases unless they rise to the level of an outbreak or closure.

Contact reporter Danyelle Khmara at dkhmara@tucson.com or 573-4223. On Twitter:

@DanyelleKhmara


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