Four students and three staff members have tested positive for COVID-19 at Craven County Schools, the district announced Wednesday night.

Students have been attending classes remotely, while staff and faculty have been working from their respective campuses.

“While we cannot legally release the identity of the individuals, we can inform you that our school nurses, in consultation with the Craven County Health Department, have been investigating these cases and anyone who may have had close contact with the positive individuals in the 48 hours prior to developing symptoms has been quarantined,” the school district said in a news release.

Close contact refers to the individual being less than 6 feet away from others for a total of 15 minutes or more.

Craven County Schools has implemented strict guidelines related to wearing face coverings and maintaining physical distancing in its buildings as well as providing regular reminders about hand washing.

They perform daily temperature and symptom screening of all persons who enter CCS facilities.

Based on guidelines from the CDC, if an employee or student has been determined to have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19, they must remain out of school for 14 days since the last date of exposure unless they test positive, in which case, exclusion criteria would apply.

The exclusion criteria process is an employee or student is quarantined for 14 days, if they test positive during the quarantine it is an additional 10 days or 72 hours after the end of the symptoms whichever is longer.) Employees and students must complete the full 14 days of quarantine, even if they test negative.

“If any of our staff members and/or students develop symptoms of illness (fever, cough, shortness of breath or other symptoms of illness), we are requiring that they remain home and inform the school nurse of any symptoms. Ensuring that our school family and community are safe is of the greatest importance to our school system. We will continue following our established safety and health protocols.”

The following process will be followed when a student or staff member tests positive:

1. Contract tracing will begin at the school and all close contacts will receive a phone call from the school nurse explaining next steps as recommended by the Craven County Health Department and NC Department of Health and Human Services.

2. The school principal will send a letter via email/Blackboard message to notify all staff and families of the school with the positive case(s).

3. A press release will be issued to all local media, posted on the district social media sites, and the district website to inform all stakeholders of the positive case(s). If you did not receive direct communication from your school, your school is not affected.

4. A district dashboard will be updated on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of each week to report the total number of new positive cases. This data will not be cumulative but will share the total number of students and staff members testing positive based on the range of days established.

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