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School pictured with packed hallways reports 9 new coronavirus cases
A school that made national headlines after a student posted footage of packed hallways has reported nine new cases of coronavirus.
North Paulding High School in Dallas, Georgia told parents in a letter Saturday that six students and three faculty members tested positive for coronavirus.
The outbreak within the school comes after Hannah Watters, 15, was suspended for posting the video of her fellow students jammed in the hallway during the school’s first week of classes.
‘We have anticipated that Covid-19 would impact us as it has nearly every community and the district has worked in partnership with the Department of Public Health (DPH) to proactively implement safety precautions and response plans,’ The school wrote in the letter.
However, the letter did not say whether the school will close in any capacity, although it did say custodial staff will continue to disinfect regularly.
The school has come under scrutiny over how they handled the reopening after Watters’ suspension. According to ABC News, the school even made a warning over the loudspeaker that other students caught posting photos would be punished.
‘Going in (to school) I was nervous, but trusting that Paulding would keep us safe,’ Watters said.
‘But it was worse than I thought it was going to be. I didn’t feel safe, especially coming home to a family after going to school.’
On Friday, Watters said her suspension was rescinded as was the punishment for another student.
Superintendent Brian Otott has since responded publicly to the incident and said the photo was taken out of context.
‘Class changes at the high school level are a challenge while maintaining a specific schedule,’ Otott wrote in a letter to the community.
‘It is an area we are continuing to work on in this new environment to find practicable ways to further limit students from congregating. Students are in this hallway environment for just a brief period as they move to their next class.’
‘…There is no question that the photo does not look good…Wearing a mask is a personal choice, and there is no practical way to enforce a mandate on them.’
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