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Tuesday May 17th

CHCCS faces increasing COVID-19 case count

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As Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools continues in-person learning, COVID-19 case numbers are on the rise. 

There were 324 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students and staff at CHCCS last week, according to ​​Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools' COVID-19 data tracker. 

Sixty of these cases were at Chapel Hill High School, and 51 were at East Chapel Hill High School. 

Last week’s total increased by 151 percent from the week of Jan. 3, in which there were 129 confirmed cases.

In a community update on Friday, CHCCS Superintendent Nyah Hamlett said it's important that the community remains diligent with masking and hand hygiene, and get vaccinated or boosted in an effort to keep students healthy and in person. 

“Here’s a little perspective on how circumstances have shifted in a month: During the week before Winter Break, our school nurses and school administrators were contact-tracing about 10 people per week on average; last week they completed contact tracing for more than 100 reported cases,” Hamlett said in the message. 

CHCCS bases its health and safety approach on the StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit, a guideline created by the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.

This toolkit was updated on Jan. 10 to include more information about COVID-19 case and contact management.

“The Omicron variant, currently circulating in North Carolina, is even more transmissible than the Delta variant and makes the layered prevention strategies even more important,” the document read.  

In a Jan. 7 statement, Hamlett said the district will work with local health officials to increase local access to COVID-19 testing due to the omicron variant. 

Hamlett also said principals and athletic directors may take additional measures based on circumstances unique to their school. 

CHCCS aims to remain in-person, but schools across the district may go remote depending on individual needs.

“Should we have to temporarily shift a classroom or a school to remote instruction, we will not hesitate, but please remember that per Session Law 2021-130 (a.k.a. Senate Bill 654) it is not permissible for us to shift to remote instruction district-wide,” Hamlett said in the statement. 


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