Five Marietta schools employees test positive for COVID-19

Marietta City Schools began its first day of the school year Tuesday with news that five of its employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

The employees work in the system’s Maintenance and School Nutrition departments and at Dunlieth, Lockheed and Sawyer Road elementary schools, said system spokeswoman Jen Brock.

Brock said the five positive tests and one presumptive positive have been known to the system since pre-planning for the 2020-21 school year began July 27. It’s unclear when those employees were tested, when their results came back positive or how many were teachers.

Marietta City Schools implemented Cobb & Douglas Public Health guidelines for isolating the employees who tested positive and quarantining staff identified as being in close contact with those employees.

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Marietta City Schools, which has about 8,900 students and 1,400 employees, started the new school year with virtual learning. Brock said 800 educators have been given the option to teach remotely from home or at their schools.

“We believe that the decision to teach from home or the classroom should be made by our staff, and we respect that they know what is best for themselves, their families, and their personal circumstances,” she said.

The system closed its doors March 16 and completed the 2019-20 school year with remote learning. Unlike the spring when the district relaxed grading policies, Brock said the system will be assessing student grades and evaluating their attendance and class participation.

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Brock said the system is working each day to determine when it will be able to bring students back for in-person lessons.

“This is on our minds and in our hearts and though we will continue to follow the guidance and recommendations of health and science professionals, we also will explore every possible solution to bringing our teachers and students together,” she said.

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