The Harwood Unified Union School District has seen 13 cases of COVID in its seven schools in December and 42 since the school year began.
HUUSD superintendent Brigid Nease also provided information on vaccination rates throughout the district. As of December 7, 98.5% of HUUSD staff are vaccinated. At Harwood Union Middle and High School 84.02% of students have received two doses of the Pfizer vaccine and 86.06 have received their first dose.
At Crossett Brook Middle School 64.43% of students have had two doses of Pfizer and 84.99 have received one dose. At Brookside Primary School 31.71% of students have received two doses of Pfizer and 62.08% have received their first dose.
At the Fayston Elementary School 40.35% of students have received two doses of the vaccine and 80.82% have received their first dose. In Moretown 39.35% of students have received two doses and 73.96 have received their first dose. In Waitsfield 34.68 have received two doses and 82.15 have received one dose. In Warren 40.74 % of students have received two doses and 72.90% have received one.
Nease also offered an update on the districtís test-to-stay program.
ìThe close contact test-to-stay program for unvaccinated staff and students began on November 29 and has prevented students and staff from having to miss learning days. Those deemed close contacts from an in-school exposure quarantine at home for seven days from their last day of exposure and receive an antigen test each day prior to attending school. This program is only for those who are unvaccinated asymptomatic close contacts within the school setting,î Nease noted in a report to the school board and community.
Nease explained that symptomatic response testing is being offered to those who develop symptoms while at school. Students and staff are offered a rapid antigen test and, if negative, offered a PCR test. All symptomatic staff and students are sent home.
To date, 263 rapid antigen tests have been conducted. Two hundred-fifty of those have been part of the in-school close contact test-to-stay program. Surveillance testing has increased over the last few weeks. Around 700 tests have been collected each of the last two weeks. Unvaccinated winter athletes and any athletes participating in gymnastics and wrestling are testing weekly.
Sixty-one children 5-11 years old were vaccinated by the Vermont Department of Health at Waitsfield Elementary on November 17. There is a 100-dose clinic sponsored by Shaws/OSCO for children ages 5-11 at Crossett Brook on December 16. Parents may sign up their students here: www.mhealthsystem.com/CrossettBrookPediatric.
Nease also reported on percentages of students absent from October 21 through December. 8. Kindergarteners throughout the district were absent at the highest rates, 11.6%. School-by-school those rates for kindergarten varied from 5.6% in Moretown to 25.1% in Fayston.
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