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Wilson class quarantined because of COVID

JACKSON (WNE) — Someone at Wilson Elementary School tested positive for COVID-19 in the first week of September, triggering the quarantine of an entire second-grade class.

Given that the coronavirus pandemic is still active in Teton County, a case in the schools was perhaps unavoidable. It certainly was an eventuality administrators had been planning for.

“We had protocols in place, and our protocols worked,” said Charlotte Reynolds, district communications director. “We got the information we needed to be able to communicate to families within a really short period of time.”

On Monday, Wilson Principal Scott McDowell sent an email to parents explaining that the district had learned of the positive case over the weekend. Because of last week’s four-day schedule, the last time the class was together had been Sept. 3, so the 14-day quarantine started the following day.

That means the affected kids will be back in the classroom Sept. 21, since the final day of the quarantine will be a Friday, when students aren’t physically in school.

During quarantine, kids won’t get a two-week vacation; instead, they have switched to full-time virtual learning.

When the switch to digital school happened in the spring, kids and teachers were underprepared, having never used some of the systems, especially at the elementary school level.

Educators hope that isn’t the case now, because Fridays are intended to be opportunities to create digital literacy in students.