More Liberty County School System Schools reported school-based close contact exposures this past week as mentioned during the Liberty County Board of Education Work Session meeting held Oct. 27.
As of Oct. 23, there are eight students with a current positive COIVD-19 status with school based close contact. There are 83 students quarantined as a result of school-based contact. According to the report there are 5,134 students attending school in person. The LCSS reports states there are 14 LCSS staff quarantined as a result of school-based contact with one staff with a current positive COVID status.
Last week the Courier reported that 18 students and seven LCSS staff were placed into quarantine status as a result of school-based close contact. The report stated that one LCSS staff, with school-based close contact, had tested positive for COVID-19.
Last week letters, dated Oct. 16, informing parents of potential COVID exposures were sent out by Midway Middle School and Bradwell Institute
Bradwell Principal, Roland Van Horn, sent out a secondary notification letter dated Oct. 21 indicating someone had tested positive on Oct. 20.
Liberty College and Career Academy sent out notification letters on Oct. 21.
On Oct. 22 Bradwell sent yet another letter and Taylors Creek also notified parents of a positive COVID finding.
Lewis Frasier Middle School sent out notification letters on Oct. 23.
According to the LCSS website the LCSS will continue to notify affected students’ parents/guardians as well as employees when they have been exposed to someone who tests positive for COVID-19.
School-based contact means an individual was within 6 feet of an infected person for more than 15 minutes. If an individual’s exposure to a student or employee who has tested positive meets the Georgia Department of Public Health’s (GDPH) requirements for mandated precautionary quarantine, parents/guardians and affected employees will be advised immediately, the LCSS website states. A precautionary quarantine does not mean that an individual is sick or will become sick; rather, it is a GDPH-mandated practice, fully supported by the Liberty County School System, to best ensure the safety of the student or employee, as well as those teaching and learning around them.
Students and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 or who have recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19 must not return to school until they meet the GDPH’s Return to School Guidance After COVID-19 Illness or Exposure.
At the Board work Session the BOE approved to adopt their finalized plan for the sixth phase of the Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (E-SPLOST VI) which included the facility condition assessment at each school, input from stakeholders, updating project construction costs and holding virtual community meetings.
According to Chief Operations Officer Arnold Jackson the LCSS is anticipating tax collections to be $54 million or average $900,000 per month for 60 months. The collection period for E-SPLOST VI will begin in July 2022 and end in June 2027. This tax will be a continuation tax of the existing 1% sales tax with no disruption in collections.
It was essential that the Board approved the ESPLOST VI adoption so the LCSS would have sufficient time in getting the matter on the March 2, 2021 referendum to voters. The LCSS will be submitting a request to the Board of Elections to publish a call for a special election.
A matter brought before the Board for consideration was the replacement of 800 MacBook laptops that are more than six years old and are experiencing hardware failures. Currently the LCSS is having to pay for repairs on the outdated devices.
The older MacBooks would be replaced with laptops that have a larger storage capacity as well as new and up-to-date components to maximize performance. In addition, the purchase will include 4-year warranty through Apple Care as well as the Microsoft Office Suite. The cost, paid through the current E-SPLOST funds would be $1,213,051.17