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Report: Coronavirus cases in schools reflect surges in communities

Posted at 2:43 PM, Nov 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-06 18:27:06-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Coronavirus cases are about to hit the 400 mark in the School District of Palm Beach County.

In just two days, reported COVID-19 cases within district schools increased by 62.

But countywide, there was an increase of more than 150 new cases in one day.

A Bloomberg report published this week found that schools seeing an uptick of COVID-19 cases are likely a reflection of surges in their own communities, and testing shows COVID-19 outbreaks are not happening in schools.

"The schools, they’ve been doing wonderfully with trying to make sure that they use social distancing and cleaning thoroughly, incorporating more hand sanitizers and hand washing stations, making sure all their students are wearing masks including the teachers," said Dr. Angelica johnson with the T. Leroy Jefferson Medical Society. "And teachers have to be working masks and facial shields, so we have not seen the spread of COVID rise as rapidly as we once thought it was once going to."

Dr. Johnson is an emergency room pediatrician and said the majority of risky behavior happens outside of school.

"We're seeing that with people that we trust such as family members or other friends, we take our masks off. We’re just in their face, we’re close company, we’re close quarters, we don’t wash our hands as frequently," said Dr. Johnson.

Dr. Johnson recommends parents who have a sick child with siblings in the same household increase sanitation habits to limit the spread to other relatives.