Cedar Ridge students, staff test positive for COVID-19

School switches to virtual learning, cancels all sporting events
Updated: Sep. 10, 2020 at 11:46 AM CDT
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INDEPENDENCE COUNTY, Ark. (KAIT) - An elementary student at Cedar Ridge has tested positive for COVID-19, school officials said Wednesday.

According to a post on the school’s Facebook page, contact tracing has been completed and all probable close contacts have been contacted.

Dear Parents, Guardians and Community Members, An elementary student tested positive for COVID-19 today, Wednesday,...

Posted by Cedar Ridge School District K-12 on Wednesday, September 9, 2020

A school official said late Wednesday in total, seven faculty and three students have tested positive.

Cedar Ridge administrators announced Tuesday its high school would switch to virtual learning and cancel all upcoming athletic events due to possible COVID-19 contact.

The following day, the district announced another faculty member had tested positive for COVID-19.

Dr. Sherry McMasters, superintendent for the Cedar Ridge School District, stated the decision to switch to virtual instruction is “not an easy decision; however, it is the best option for our students at this time.”

The choice, McMasters said in a news release, came after “several high school faculty have been identified as probable close contacts (PCC) with COVID-positive individual(s).”

Those identified as a PCC “must remain quarantined for the full 14 days from the last contact with the infected person, regardless of a negative COVID test result,” the superintendent said.

Due to the district’s lack of substitute teachers during the PCC quarantine, McMasters said the high school “will pivot to virtual instruction for the remainder of the week, Sept. 9-11.”

She said a decision regarding the week of Sept. 14-18 will come after they review this week’s data.

In addition to switching to virtual classes, McMasters announced all athletic events are canceled through Friday, Sept. 18.

The announcement comes just days after the superintendent announced that three elementary school faculty members tested positive for the coronavirus, forcing the school to transition to online learning for the next two weeks.

The Cedar Ridge School Cafeteria will continue to prepare meals for students. Parents and guardians should contact the high school or elementary office before 8:30 a.m. to order meals.

There will be no door-to-door deliveries. Instead, McMasters said meals will be available for pick up at the following locations:

  • Oil Trough City Hall
  • Thida General Store
  • Cord Baptist Church
  • The Old Cord-Charlotte Health Center
  • Cedar Ridge High School Cafeteria

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