Superintendent: First two days back at school ‘better than expected’

Returning To Class In A Pandemic

POCAHONTAS, Ark. (KAIT) - Superintendent Jerry Martens says he was initially concerned about returning from the holiday break with the number of COVID-19 cases rising in the state.

The district is currently in the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement’s “Red Zone,” meaning there are 50-99 infections per 10,000 people of those living in the Pocahontas School District.

“I was really concerned that there were going to be some high numbers coming back into the school on January Fourth,” Martens said. “Fortunately, that was not the case [Monday].”

He initially anticipated being overwhelmed with COVID cases, but Martens says that has not been the case so far.

“I expected it to be overwhelming,” he said. “When they said we had 4,300 cases in the state, I said ‘Oh my goodness, this is going to be bad.’ Fortunately, it hasn’t turned out to be so and I hope we continue to stay that way.”

He said there are four to five students currently in quarantine after being named as a high-risk, close contact to a positive COVID-19 family member. In addition, he says there are two teachers currently out due to the virus.

Martens says the district continues to take the necessary precautions to be sure the virus doesn’t spread.

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