JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Just days into the new school year at two Jacksonville private schools and already some students have been asked to self-quarantine after several tested positive for COVID-19.
On Monday, school administrators at The Bolles School and Episcopal School of Jacksonville announced that students from both schools who recently attended a large gathering have tested positive for the coronavirus.
News4Jax obtained a copy of a letter that was sent to parents of middle school students at Episcopal about an undisclosed number of students who tested positive for COVID-19. The letter states that last Monday, there was a gathering at a home where there was no social distancing and no masks being worn. The letter also states a large group of Episcopal and Bolles students were in attendance. As a result, Episcopal students who came in contact with the COVID-19 positive students for more than 15 minutes on Thursday or Friday have been directed to quarantine for 14 days.
“As of this morning, a group of both Middle School and Upper School students at the Munnerlyn campus have been asked to quarantine for 14 days and were provided Online Access to their classes. The number of students required to quarantine will increase if any other students test positive,” the letter reads.
According to Episcopal administrators, none of their students who tested positive had symptoms of the virus.
Administrators at Bolles sent a letter to parents of middle school students announcing that a small number of students on the Bartram Campus tested positive for COVID-19. Students who may have been in close contact with the COVID-19 positive students have been notified and directed to quarantine, that letter said.
While neither school said how many students tested positive and how many have been ordered to self-isolate, News4Jax received an anonymous screenshot of a Facebook post that was clipped so that News4Jax could see where the post originated. The post states that last Monday, about 30 kids from Episcopal and Bolles attended a party. The post went on to say that several kids from both schools tested positive for COVID-19 and they’re all in quarantine.
Each parent who News4Jax reached out to didn’t want to comment on camera or over the phone in a recorded interview because they didn’t want to make trouble for the schools. But one parent said this was bound to happen, despite what plans the schools put in place to keep the virus from spreading.
All of the students who are now quarantined are taking online classes until it is safe for them to return to school.
In the meantime, Episcopal school officials have threatened disciplinary action if any student jeopardizes campus learning by engaging in activities that puts them at risk of contracting and spreading the virus.