As Florida public schools begin to open for in-person learning, the legal battle over the repercussions of doing so begins to ensue. At least twelve county public schools are planning to reopen and nine of those twelve had a COVID positivity rate above five percent, according to the Florida Department of Health.
On August 8, 2020, the latest data showed that in the past two weeks “all 12 counties on some days exceeded 5 percent positivity rate, with some counties far exceeding that metric.” For example, Baker County had a 36.9 percent positivity on Friday, and Bradford had a 42 percent positivity rate on Thursday.
According to Mark Richard, the Florida Education Association’s attorney, the school districts opening this week are Baker, Bradford, Dixie, Franklin, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Suwannee, Martin, Calhoun, Hardee, Union and Wakulla.
As schools have either begun to reopen or convert to virtual teaching, officials have stated that schools that show a rate higher than five percent in positive COVID-19 testing will have to consider closing.
This call of action for public schools was suggested by CDC Director Dr. Roberts Redfield in agreement with White House Coronavirus Response coordinators on August 2, 2020.
Written by Brielle R. Buford
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware
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