New Hampshire schools deal with rising COVID-19 cases with masks, vaccine clinics | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children | #schools



There are no state COVID-19 vaccination mandates, and each school crafts its own policies. Most schools in the state are reporting some cases, and more than 40 clusters of COVID-19 cases were reported last week alone.The Concord School District held the first of several elementary school COVID-19 clinics Thursday. Five mornings a week, it offers drive-thru COVID-19 testing in a school parking lot. “We try to be as proactive as we can,” said interim Superintendent Kathleen Murphy. “Our school district still requires masks. We’re doing the best we can with the 3-feet distancing.”On any given day recently, 25-30% or more of all new statewide cases are in children under 18. Any student who tests positive faces a 10-day quarantine away from school.”I feel like we’re doing everything we can, from all the protocols that they’ve recommended to testing to now the vaccine clinics,” Murphy said. “I’m not sure what else we can do to keep our kids in school.”Masks and pool testing are happening at schools in the Conway area.”As these numbers ramp up, it puts a strain on the staffing, as well, so we’ve had to take some steps,” said SAU 9 Superintendent Kevin Richard. “We’re kind of getting back to serving lunches in the classrooms, and some of the before and after school programs have been impacted.”Two outbreaks and a cluster have been reported in Bedford schools. Otherwise, masks in the district are optional, although highly recommended.”It’s very difficult for just one small setting to mitigate in a certain way when everywhere else, it’s not happening,” said Bedford Superintendent Michael Fournier.Gov. Chris Sununu is still rejecting the idea of any statewide mandates.”The state of emergency and mandates were put in place when there were really no other tools for folks to protect themselves,” Sununu said. “We have those tools now. It’s the vaccine.”State epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan recommends wearing masks indoors, and asked parents and educators to promote the vaccine for staff members and students.

There are no state COVID-19 vaccination mandates, and each school crafts its own policies. Most schools in the state are reporting some cases, and more than 40 clusters of COVID-19 cases were reported last week alone.

The Concord School District held the first of several elementary school COVID-19 clinics Thursday. Five mornings a week, it offers drive-thru COVID-19 testing in a school parking lot.

“We try to be as proactive as we can,” said interim Superintendent Kathleen Murphy. “Our school district still requires masks. We’re doing the best we can with the 3-feet distancing.”

On any given day recently, 25-30% or more of all new statewide cases are in children under 18. Any student who tests positive faces a 10-day quarantine away from school.

“I feel like we’re doing everything we can, from all the protocols that they’ve recommended to testing to now the vaccine clinics,” Murphy said. “I’m not sure what else we can do to keep our kids in school.”

Masks and pool testing are happening at schools in the Conway area.

“As these numbers ramp up, it puts a strain on the staffing, as well, so we’ve had to take some steps,” said SAU 9 Superintendent Kevin Richard. “We’re kind of getting back to serving lunches in the classrooms, and some of the before and after school programs have been impacted.”

Two outbreaks and a cluster have been reported in Bedford schools. Otherwise, masks in the district are optional, although highly recommended.

“It’s very difficult for just one small setting to mitigate in a certain way when everywhere else, it’s not happening,” said Bedford Superintendent Michael Fournier.

Gov. Chris Sununu is still rejecting the idea of any statewide mandates.

“The state of emergency and mandates were put in place when there were really no other tools for folks to protect themselves,” Sununu said. “We have those tools now. It’s the vaccine.”

State epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan recommends wearing masks indoors, and asked parents and educators to promote the vaccine for staff members and students.

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