McKenzie schools pull back from in-person classes amid rising COVID-19 cases

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Rising numbers of active COVID-19 cases here in Carroll County has prompted school administrators with the McKenzie Special School District to halt in-person student attendance until the end of this month.

According to McKenzie Director of Schools Lynn Watkins, they will finish out today (Thursday, Aug. 13), and then stop in-person student attendance starting on Friday.

Watkins said that the current plan is to resume student attendance on Aug. 31.

In the meantime, teachers will be providing distance learning online for all their students starting early next week.

For those who do not have internet access at home, Watkins said that students and/or their parents can take their devices to the school parking lots or other internet hot spots around town and upload several days’ worth of instruction and assignments at a time.

Watkins said the decision was made due to an increasing number of students having to quarantine because of confirmed infection, symptoms, or contact with an infected or possibly infected person.

According to Watkins, around 50 students were out of school and quarantining at home as of Thursday afternoon.

Watkins pointed out that they can’t just send one child home, but also every other student that child has had close contact with.

“I guess this is the best thing as far as safety goes,” said Watkins.

McKenzie schools have been open for in-person classes since Aug. 4.

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