Days after a viral photograph of a crammed hallway of a school in Georgia that had reopened after coronavirus lockdown triggered outrage, nine people, including six students, have tested positive for Covid-19.
Three staff members who were at the school are also among those who tested positive, according to reports. The positive cases were reported to the school after private tests.
"We have anticipated that COVID-19 would impact us as it has nearly every community, and the district has worked in partnership with the Department of Public Health (DPH) to proactively implement safety precautions and response plans," reads a letter sent by the parents to the school. However, it is not clear whether anyone will be quarantined or if the school will shut fully or partially as a precaution.
Schools in the USA have reopened for the new academic sessions even as the threat of the pandemic looms large and cases continue to spike. While many have responded to the resurgence of cases with completely remote schooling, others have opted to return to the classroom -- which the nation's top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has said works if safety measures are the priority.
Earlier this week, a sophomore student alleged that she was suspended from the school for sharing a viral photograph of the packed hallway of the school. The image had come under backlash as social distancing norms were clearly thrown to air and many students were seen waling around without masks.
Watters alleged she was suspended over the photo and the school accused her of violating three conduct policies: using her phone during instruction time, using her phone during school hours for social media and filming students and posting on a social media platform.
However, she clarified that she posted the photo after the school hours and also the students from class 9 to 12 are exempt from the phone ban.