Students arrive at Montrose High School

Four Montrose High School staff and 33 MHS students need to seeking testing and quarantine through Wednesday, Dec. 16 as a results of three MHS staff testing COVID-19 positive.

After receiving confirmation of weekend positive COVID-19 test results for a student and staff at multiple school sites, the Montrose County School District COVID-19 Response Team (CRT) determined 184 people need to quarantine, according to a Sunday press release.

As a result of contact tracing any staff and students who had prolonged close contact with the positive people, CRT determined:

— Four Montrose High School staff and 33 MHS students need to seeking testing and quarantine through Wednesday, Dec. 16 as a results of three MHS staff testing COVID-19 positive.

— Two Northside Elementary School staff and 128 students need to seek testing and quarantine through Tuesday, Dec. 15 as a result of two NES staff testing COVID-19 positive.

— One Pomona Elementary School staff and 16 students need to seek testing and quarantine through Tuesday, Dec. 15 as a result of a PES student testing COVID-19 positive.

All affected individuals were contacted prior to public notification.

This past week, MCSD also announced a COVID-19 dashboard, available for review on the mcsd.org website. The dashboard provides information about the total number of confirmed cases this school year and over the past 14 days. Those case numbers are further extrapolated between staff and students as well as by school.

Over the past seven days, from Nov. 30 through Dec. 7, the district has received confirmation of 37 COVID-19 cases. Twenty-five of those 37 cases were students and 12 positives were staff members. As of Dec. 7, the district has had 129 confirmed COVID-19 positive cases since Aug. 27.

“Although we continue to experience rolling quarantines, the majority of MCSD students are learning in-person rather than remotely, and far more students are able to access in-person instruction versus the fraction needing to quarantine,” the district said in the press release.

The district also noted how viral prevalence continues to increase in Montrose County. MCSD encourages families to take the necessary COVID precautions to enable in-person learning to continue.

“Families must take all necessary COVID precautions through the coming weeks and months in order for our community to avoid widespread school closures,” the district said. “Failure to do so will seriously jeopardize our ability to maintain in-person school operations during the pandemic.”

In addition to the new district COVID-19 dashboard, the district is hopeful fewer staff and students will have to learn remotely soon. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) is soon set to release updated guidance on earlier return for asymptomatic quarantined staff and students.

“MCSD may soon be able to reduce the number of students and staff forced to learn remotely from home.”

In the meantime, the district continues to ask people to wear a face covering, social distance, frequently wash your hands and stay home if you are sick.

Lauren Brant is a staff writer and digital content coordinator for the Montrose Daily Press.

Lauren Brant is a staff writer and digital content coordinator for the Montrose Daily Press.

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