CORINTH, Miss. (WMC) - Two Mid-South school districts have reported positive COVID-19 cases days after opening with a traditional schedule. Corinth School District has 10 cases and nearby Alcorn School District has three.
Corinth School District was one of the first districts to open in the country. It now has 10 COVID-19 cases among students and staff, but the superintendent and others in the county are now working to learn more about if this virus is spreading in schools or off-campus.
“As a part of our contact tracing process we are going to look to expand that to, not only look at contacts in schools, but try to inquire what kind of contacts took place outside of school,” said Corinth School District Superintendent Lee Childress.
More than 100 students at Corinth School District are in quarantine, doing virtual learning, after coming into close contact with someone with COVID-19 in school. Childress said teachers use seating charts to determine who may be at risk -- anyone who had been within six feet of an infected person for ten minutes or more.
With school being open for less than two weeks, Childress believes there's a chance the spread was off school campuses.
“We’re not really sure where this came from, whether it was at school or out in the community,” said Childress.
“We have had three positive cases. Those students never reported to school, they have not been to school this year,” said Alcorn School District Superintendent Bill Brand.
Alcorn School District reopened on Wednesday and within 24 hours it reported its first COVID-19 case among students, then two more. The latest positive case is a distance learner.
Both Alcorn County and Corinth gave students the option of virtual or traditional schooling, with the overwhelming majority of students choosing in-person classes.
At the Alcorn School District, none of the positive cases have been inside a school, but three students have been quarantined because of social interactions.
“It’s important to be transparent because we want people to know you’re going to be safe in our schools,” said Brand. “Most of the cases are coming from hanging out after school, the parties, Wal Mart what kids typically do.”
Officials from The Centers for Disease Control were in Corinth Friday to look at procedures the town’s school district has after learning of 10 COVID-19 positive cases and 130 students quarantined.
“I think all schools are going to experience what we’ve experienced. The key is, are you going to be transparent,” said Childress.