Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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LDH tracking coronavirus in the classroom, monitoring quarantined students and staff

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BATON ROUGE- Some schools started last week, some this week, and some haven't started at all, but districts across the area are already seeing positive COVID cases.

Across districts, there are 24 positive COVID cases, including seven in Zachary, ten in Ascension, and seven in Livingston.

The cases in Livingston have forced more than 140 students to quarantine as of Tuesday, Aug. 11. In Zachary, 12 others are quarantines, and Ascension did not release that info.

The Department of Health has been tracking COVID outbreaks in schools across the state, so far clocking 17 positive cases this week. That number is less than the total cases in our area because it only counts cases that stem from outbreaks within schools.

“Lots of schools now, even with in the first couple days of opening have cases associated with them. So if a student or a faculty member tests positive, presumably because they contracted it on the outside, it only shows up as an outbreak if there’s more than two within a 14 day period,” Dr. Joseph Kanter with LDH said.

The governor saying in Tuesday’s presser, despite this, he doesn't think schools opened prematurely

“But we’re going to be watching it very, very closely to make sure that it’s safe—that we are striking the right balance there—and we will make adjustments if we need to,” Kanter said.

Dr. Kanter expects the number of cases to increase, inevitably.

"What will mitigate that are the preventative measures and the cautions that a school takes both on the front end on how they set up, how they distance, how they mask, and on the back end. When a case does arise, what they do to mitigate that risk.”

Officials with Central schools did not reply. West Baton Rouge parish reported no cases so far, since opening on Monday, Aug. 10.


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