Hillsborough County schools report 63 cases last week, still no word on quarantine numbers
Students line up for their classroom outside of Oak Terrace Elementary School in Highwood, Ill., on Sept. 3, 2020. Image via AP

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Neighboring Pasco County does report quarantine data, numbers that suggest a significant impact in Hillsborough.

The Hillsborough County School District is continuing to report more cases of coronavirus across schools, but it still has yet to publicly release the number of individuals quarantined following contact with a positive individual.

Last week, spanning Sunday, Sept. 27, through Friday, the district recorded 63 new cases — 37 students and 26 staff members. With last week’s added cases, the district has reported 321 cases of coronavirus since the start of the school year in-person on Aug. 31. This includes 219 students and 102 employees.

The district has yet to update the dashboard to reflect cases over the weekend and on Monday.

Individuals in contact with an individual on campus who tested positive must be quarantined, required to stay home for 14 days.

Students and employees listed in the dashboard since reopening have each been on campus, except for four students listed on the Aug. 31 report who had not on campus because it was the first day of school. The Hillsborough County COVID-19 dashboard updates every 4 hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Hillsborough County School District has not released the number of individuals required to quarantine since the start of the school year, which compared to neighboring school districts, could be a significant number of students who opted to go back to in-person school.

For reference, Pasco County, which has reported 123 student cases and 58 staff cases since the start of the school year on Aug. 24, has so far had to quarantine 2,632 students and 277 employees. In a report from Sept. 4, Zephyrhills High School quarantined 119 students in one day, all in regard to just one student case.

And the Hillsborough District has seen its fair share of high school outbreaks.

Newsome and Durant high schools quarantined football players following a game against each other. That caused the district to postpone the upcoming games for the schools, since neither had enough players to participate.

Newsome High School also saw the largest number of reported student cases in one school, reaching 20 positive cases in the span of about two-and-a-half weeks.

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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