Cobb school’s fifth grade class goes virtual due to rise in COVID cases

Fifth grade classes at a Cobb County elementary school will shift to virtual learning due to a spike in confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Fifth graders at East Side Elementary School on Thursday will begin remote learning and will remain virtual through Aug. 20, according to an email sent by the school to parents on Wednesday. The students are set to return to in-person learning on Aug. 23.

Parents of fifth grade students were asked to pick up their children before noon today.

A Cobb County School District spokeswoman said in a statement that the fifth-grade class was moved to virtual learning based on its protocols. The district said it moves to remote learning when in-person teaching is not possible due to the number of students or staff members in quarantine.

East Side Elementary School had 1,185 students enrolled in spring, according to the Georgia Department of Education. At the time, the school had 227 fourth-graders who would now be in fifth grade.

As of Friday, East Side Elementary only had three active COVID-19 cases, according to the school district’s website. The Cobb district reported 185 known cases of COVID-19 in schools as of last Friday.

Masks are optional in Cobb schools though “strongly encouraged.”

Since the start of the school year, hundreds of cases of COVID-19 have been reported by metro Atlanta school districts. Late Tuesday, the Clayton County district announced that Kemp Primary School was switching to virtual learning for the rest of the week as a precaution for students and staff.

This story has been updated.