OUR VIEW: Virtual week was a good call

Published 10:00 am Thursday, January 14, 2021

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We know it was a difficult adjustment for parents, but it appears the Troup County School System’s decision to go virtual for the first week after Christmas has paid off.

We reported Tuesday that more than 100 combined students and staff members had a positive case of COVID-19, which is the highest number so far, this school year. An increase in cases was also expected after family gatherings for Christmas and New Year’s Day, and TCSS had the foresight to plan for that.

If you’ve followed the numbers this year, you know that typically the number of people in quarantine is several times the number of positives. For instance, on Dec. 11, there were 54 total COVID-19 cases at the time at TCSS and more than 700 total people were in quarantine.

Without the virtual week, it’s possible that over 1,000 people would’ve been in quarantine right now. Instead, the number of people quarantining was at 345 on Tuesday.

Instead of students and staff members returning to school last week and spreading COVID-19, all of the recorded cases were known before students returned to the classroom. That means spread in the classroom is (hopefully) down.

We thought a week of virtual schooling was the right decision when it was made, but now it looks even better, given the high number of COVID-19 positives.

We have no idea what the future holds for this school year, but it’s clear that TCSS gave students and teachers a better chance to get through five more months by thinking ahead. We applaud the decision and hope to see the COVID-19 numbers start to drop as we report on them in the days ahead.