FHUSD seal.jpg

According to Fountain Hills Unified School District Superintendent Kelly Glass, a number of students and teachers were sent home to quarantine last week when two students arrived on campus displaying COVID-like symptoms.

In an email sent to district parents, Glass explained that this is FHUSD’s first issue with potential campus exposure to COVID-19 following the return to in-person classes. The issues arose at Fountain Hills High School and Fountain Hills Middle School.

According to the announcement, two children were sent to school on Monday, Oct. 5, and displayed COVID-like symptoms. It is also noted that one of their parents had tested positive for COVID-19 later that week.

“We promptly determined which students and staff were exposed to the students,” reads the announcement. “As a precaution, the staff and students exposed to the students were sent home for quarantine – closing the classroom for students.”

Families of impacted students were contacted to explain the situation.

“The students will remain home until the quarantine period is completed,” continued Glass’ announcement. “If fall break weren’t upon us, we would close those classrooms for 14-24 days, dependent upon student and staff symptoms and positive test results.”

The classrooms were sanitized twice in the aftermath.

Glass stated that the County Health Department was contacted, who confirmed the appropriate actions had been taken.

“I am sharing this because we want you to know that we are taking this seriously,” Glass said. “It is so important for all of us to monitor our health, especially when we are coming back to school.”

Glass said FHUSD is confident in the precautions and mitigation plan established by the district and maintained over the first nine weeks of class.

“Again, we greatly appreciate all the efforts of everyone to keep our students, staff, families and community healthy from COVID-19 and keep our schools open,” she said. “We look forward to having your children back in school full-time starting on Oct. 19.”

Dispute

Following the announcement, The Times was contacted by a parent of the students involved, stating FHUSD misrepresented the situation. While the parent tested positive for COVID-19 in the days following, they state their children were not sent home for COVID-like symptoms.

One was picked up from school on Oct. 5 with stomach issues and the second reportedly stated having stomach issues in class, but was not sent home.

The parent who tested positive stated the children are now quarantining with another parent following the onset of their own symptoms, but the children and the other parent have tested negative.

The parent stated they decided to keep their children home heading into fall break as a precaution.