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Over 1,000 in Georgia district quarantine as high school shut

Over 1,000 in Georgia district quarantine as high school shut
Posted at 4:43 PM, Aug 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-11 19:43:15-04

CANTON, Ga. (AP) — A Georgia school district has quarantined more than 1,000 students and staff members because of possible exposure to the coronavirus since classes resumed this last week.

The Cherokee County School District outside Atlanta said it would also temporarily shut down a hard-hit high school in which a widely shared photo showed dozens of maskless students posing together.

"Since we’ve reopened, and as of this morning, there have been 59 positive COVID-19 tests confirmed among our students and staff, which have led us to mandate two-week quarantines for 925 students and staff," Superintendent Dr. Brian V. Hightower said in a Facebook post. "We are not hesitating to quarantine students and staff who have had possible exposure – even if the positive test was prompted by possible exposure rather than symptoms, as all positive cases can lead to the infection of others. Our transparency to our community is far beyond any requirements by the Department of Public Health, but we believe our community benefits from our longstanding commitment to transparency. We don’t need social media to tell us to be transparent – it’s who we are because we care about our community."

As of Tuesday night, the school has ordered 1,024 students to quarantine, according to a list the district created.

The district, which serves more than 42,000 students, listed about 40 cases in 19 schools, but it's not clear if the numbers represent people who've tested positive or if they were exposed to those infected, ABC News reported.

The state Department of Public Health reports that Georgia on Tuesday posted its highest single-day death total so far of the pandemic at 137.

The state is currently averaging more than 60 deaths being reported each day,