Student tests positive for COVID-19 at Tohopekaliga High School; 22 in quarantine

Classes began last week


OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – A student at Tohopekaliga High School has tested positive for COVID-19, prompting officials to ask an additional 22 students to quarantine, according to the Osceola School District.

A district official didn’t provide any further information about the case on Monday.

Students who opted to return to campus rather than continue online learning came back to the classroom on Aug. 24, exactly one week ago.

Since then, Harmony Middle School in St. Cloud has had to shut down its campus entirely for two weeks after 10 teachers tested positive for the deadly respiratory illness.

Florida Department of Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran was in The Villages Monday alongside the governor and addressed the campus closure.

“So our teacher population is very young, very safe, but what’s not safe is our substitutes and so the reason really we had to close is because we couldn’t backfill with our substitutes because our substitutes are mostly over 65, and they are just not available to us right now,” Corcoran said.

He said the teachers who fell ill had been interacting in the break room and that’s how they were exposed.

Dr. Scott Atlas, an adviser on the White House’s coronavirus task force, was also at the news conference Monday and reiterated Gov. Ron DeSantis’ stance that children are less at risk for becoming seriously ill if they contract COVID-19.

“You have to remember, the children have no serious risk from this disease, it’s very safe for them. They can handle this,” Atlas said.

According to the Florida Department of Health, 48,928 children across the state have tested positive for COVID-19 since March and eight pediatric deaths have been reported.

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