WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — A plan is in place for Williamson County students this fall.
“We’re convinced that there’s an appropriate way to have school knowing that there’s a risk, but because the health authorities have given us some recommendations on how to manage that risk we think the most appropriate thing is to have school open in the fall,” said Superintendent Jason Golden.
He explains the district’s goal is to safely provide students with the maximum direct teacher instruction possible. They’ve created a plan. The crux of the plan depends on the spread of COVID-19 in the community. As spread percentages increase, restrictions do as well.
“Right now,” said Golden, “the percentage is somewhere around .137 or .138 in our county.”
This indicates the low-spread category. In this phase, all staff, students, and visitors will be screened prior to entry. There’s an emphasis on handwashing. Six feet of social distancing will only take place in spaces of mass gatherings. Masks will not be required.
Golden addressed how the district plans to bounce back and forth between the different phases to make sure they’re staying safe with transmission.
“Our structure is right now, because we get daily information based on the daily standard, in the event we have to go from one standard to another, we will make decisions in consultation with our local health department,” said Golden.
Golden goes on to explain if someone tests positive for COVID-19, the building will close for cleaning and the school day will turn remote until it’s safe to return in person.
So how will schools know who tests positive?
“We don’t get individual names at this point. We are having a deep discussion with the health department [to see] is it possible for them to tell us about whether there has been a positive case in a particular school. We do rely on parents to let us know,” said Golden.
Golden acknowledges even he won’t really know what the first day of school will look like until closer to August 7.
“We are a little concerned, we do see the reports that there’s an increase in the positive cases as the summer goes along.”
Meaning his solid plan may not matter. Residents in the county are really the ones in control.
“Make good decisions this summer,” urges Golden, “protect yourself. protect your community.”
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.