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Gibson Co. school corporations release new masking, contact tracing policies

Published: Aug. 20, 2021 at 11:56 AM CDT
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GIBSON CO., Ind. (WFIE) - All three Gibson School Corporations said after speaking with the Gibson Co. Health Department they are implementing new changes for masking and contact tracing in the classroom.

Officials released the new policy and say the following changes will be required in the classroom:

  1. If an individual student is always masked while in the classroom, the student will only be considered a close contact if the individual had contact with a Covid positive individual within three feet for 15 minutes or longer during a 24-hour period.
  2. If an individual student is unmasked while in the classroom, we will be required to continue to contact trace using six feet for 15 minutes or longer during a 24-hour period.

The release also said, while masking remains the choice of the parents at this time, they are very concerned about the number of students and adults in the county who are being quarantined because of Covid. If students are wearing masks in the classroom it will decrease their contact tracing radius from six feet to three feet.

School officials say they want to take as many precautions as possible, but still leave some parental choice. If they do not see improvement, they may have to move to virtual learning and potentially return to universal masking protocols for students, staff and visitors.

A section to inform parents how they can help was also included and advised them to do three things:

  1. Keep your child at home if they have any symptoms of illness and call your school to determine when your child can return and what they need to do to return.
  2. Have their student mask up.
  3. Talk to their doctor about getting their student vaccinated.

South Gibson also advised parents that if their child is involved in extracurricular activity they could still be contact traced in practice or competition since they can not wear masks during the activity. However, fully vaccinated students identified as close contact would not have to quarantine as long as they remain symptom free.

East and North Gibson Co. Schools updated mask policy
East and North Gibson Co. Schools updated mask policy(East and North Gibson School Corporations)

South and North Gibson will begin implementing the new policy immediately while East Gibson says they will begin on Monday, August 23.

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