Georgia’s Largest School District Shows Challenges in Opening Schools.
It took all of one day for the challenge of opening schools to become very clear in Georgia’s largest school district, and this was just staff, not the 180k students of Gwinnett County.
On Wednesday, teachers in Georgia’s largest school district returned to elementary, middle and high school campuses to start in-person planning for the fall semester.
By the next day, 260 district employees had been barred from entering their schools, either because they tested positive for the coronavirus or had been directly exposed to someone who had.
Sloan Roach, spokeswoman for Gwinnett County Public Schools, which serves more than 180,000 students, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that most of the cases were tied to community spread, rather than being spread at the schools. Some of the employees who reported exposure to the virus had not come to work yet, Roach added.
“Given the number of [covid-19] cases in Gwinnett, we would expect to see positives among our employees based on the community spread in our county,” Roach told the newspaper.
The outbreak has complicated the return to school in Gwinnett County, which this week had the highest number of new coronavirus cases in the state. Georgia has reported 195,435 cases and 3,842 deaths to date. But Gwinnett County’s teachers and school administrators are hardly alone in dealing with the fallout of an early outbreak as they try to launch a digital-only return.