Community Independent School District in Collin County is shutting down their only middle school after a number of students and teachers were confirmed positive for COVID-19.
The district made the announcement Thursday morning, saying they were closing the Edge Middle School campus and transitioning all 6th-8th students online after it reached Level 4 of their COVID-19 response protocol.
Officials with the district confirmed to NBC 5 Thursday that five students have tested positive along with three school staff members. Those eight cases caused another eight staff members to quarantine, reducing the number of people available to adequately run the school -- so the decision was made to close the campus until after it could be cleaned.
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"These numbers are well below 5% of our student population, which is why the Level 4 response was enacted solely by quarantined staff not being able to physically teach on campus," the district said in a statement. "None of those staff members we quarantined have exhibited any symptoms - they were just sent home after 15 minutes or more of close contact exposure (six feet or less) to one of these eight positive cases, despite all students and staff involved wearing masks at all times."
The district said they transitioned to online learning to allow staff to continue working from home and for the district "to maintain its academic rigor while also maintaining the safety of our students and staff."
In a letter to parents Thursday, the district said any student who has a sibling at Edge may switch to online classes temporarily. Siblings of Edge students who are asymptomatic and have not been in close contact with a positive case of COVID-19 are not required to quarantine.
The district said they plan to return to in-person classes at Edge Middle School on Sept. 17, after the building has been cleaned.
Community ISD said outside of Edge Middle School there are seven people quarantined in the district, though they didn't specify if those seven were students or staffers or the campuses involved. They did confirm none of their other three campuses, which includes two elementary schools and a high school, are in any danger of reaching Level 4 in their COVID-19 response program.
The Community ISD serves approximately 2,500 students from the towns of Copeville, Josephine, Lavon and Nevada primarily in Collin County.