Schools in the Valley continue to battle COVID-19

Published: Sep. 2, 2021 at 6:27 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - COVID-19 continues to spread throughout the Valley, and it is affecting all age groups.

About 500,000 kids tested positive with COVID-19 in the U.S. within three weeks in August, the CDC reported. Since social distancing and mask wearing is hard to practice fully in school, health experts say keeping kids healthy can be a challenge.

Although all public school students in the commonwealth must wear masks, many say it’s smart to layer health practices, like social distancing, handwashing and getting vaccinated. The delta variant is more contagious, making it more spreadable in schools.

“It wants to spread, and, if you’re not vaccinated, it can make you really ill, and you can spread it to other people,” said Central Shenandoah Health District Communications Specialist Jordi Shelton.

Shelton says testing and staying home when you’re sick are also very important. She says contact tracing is also a good way to stop the spread of COVID-19.

“Contact tracing is a public health tool that’s been around for a very long time, and it’s one that has been very effective in finding and helping to prevent the spread further,” Shelton said.

Rockingham County Public Schools has 56 active student cases (including five cases at Massanutten Technical Center), as stated on their COVID-19 dashboard.

In Augusta County, their COVID-19 dashboard lists total cases. Since the start of school, they’ve seen 340 positive COVID-19 cases. On September 2 at 1:00 p.m., 207 of those students have returned to school.

On the dashboard, some schools are facing higher rates of COVID-19. For example, Stuarts Draft High School has had 64 total cases, with 43 of them recovered and back at school, leaving 21 active cases.

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