As Hillsborough County prepares classrooms, summer coronavirus cases among staff and students reported
School custodian Camelia Tobon wipes a table in Rowlett, Texas, Wednesday. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

School in Texas
The school year hasn't started yet, but there are already student and staff cases.

Hillsborough County School Board member Karen Perez continued to post updates on the number of coronavirus cases in the district via Facebook. 

According to Wednesday morning post, 220 staff and nine students have tested positive for the virus.

Florida Politics reached out to the Hillsborough County Schools communications office to confirm the numbers and was referred to the board meeting. The Hillsborough County Superintendent reported 211 cases for staff and nine students since March at the Tuesday board meeting. 

Perez garnered attention last Friday when she broke the news of coronavirus in the district in another Facebook post.

“I just received this information this morning and feel it’s my responsibility to disclose… To date, we have had 206 positive cases in Hillsborough County Public Schools. Of these cases, 5 have been students. The majority of cases are from individuals who have come to work sick instead of reporting properly. This before we even open our schools to students…. now understand why this WILL impact your students and families.”

Hillsborough County currently has 28,742 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of July 29. Of the 28,618 infected Florida residents in Hillsborough, 1,877, or 6%, are children 14 or younger. Another 17% are 15 to 24, nearing 5,000 cases.  

The Hillsborough County School District is the seventh largest school district in the U.S. It has more than 230 schools and more than 200,000 students.

As of Monday, 145,773 students, 77% of the district, have submitted a declaration of intent, choosing between three options: brick-and-mortar schools, Hillsborough County eLearning or Virtual School. 

From those respondents, 71,980 have chosen in-person schooling, 63,179 will continue with eLearning, and 10,614 will go to Virtual School. There are still 44,512 students that have yet to respond. 

The school board decided last Thursday to delay the start of the school year by two weeks, moving it from Aug. 10 to Aug. 24, and giving late responders time to solidify their choices.

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected].


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