Manistee Middle High School student tests positive for COVID-19 | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children | #schools

MANISTEE — Manistee Middle High School students were placed in quarantine as a result of a student testing positive for COVID-19, according to an email sent out to Manistee Area Public Schools staff and families Wednesday afternoon.

“As follow-up to a recent positive COVID-19 antigen test, a PCR test was conducted and confirmed the positive result for a student of Manistee Middle High School,” superintendent Ron Stoneman said in the email. “The student is following quarantining protocols. We have conducted contact tracing and any individual found to have been in close contact has been contacted and will also be following quarantine guidelines.”

The antigen test detects protein fragments specific to the coronavirus and results often can be reported within 15 minutes. The PCR test detects genetic material that is specific to the virus. Turnaround time is longer with the PCR test but it is the most accurate test available.

During contact tracing, officials work with a positive case to determine who may have been infected through exposure from close contact. A close contact is anyone deemed to have been within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes.

“The 15 minutes does not have to be 15 consecutive minutes, but it has to be 15 minutes within a 24-hour period. It could be five minutes here and five minutes there, but it has to add up to 15 minutes or more in a 24-hour period,” Jeanine Taylor, DHD #10 public information officer, said in a previous interview. “Then, we contact all the close contacts. We just follow the same protocol we do with all cases: We contact the close contacts, let them know they need to quarantine and give them further instruction.”

Close contacts can return to school after a 14-day quarantine period as long as COVID-19 symptoms do not manifest.

In his email, Stoneman encouraged families to continue screening students before school every day.

“We still need to remain vigilant in monitoring for symptoms,” he said. “Please remember that student temperatures are to be taken and symptoms monitored from home each school day. Families are responsible for deciding if a student should be attending school based upon at-home monitoring each day.”

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