Covid-19’s Latest Effect on the Lewis Cass Kings

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School and this community is changing dramatically this week. Many things are going  to change while living day-to-day life as a high school student at Lewis Cass. Covid has caused a substantial amount of problems in the past year of schooling with students being quarantined and sent home for close contact tracing because of a student testing positive. This year has been no different. 

According to the latest covid-19 restrictions for Lewis Cass, masks are no longer required, it is encouraged for all students and staff members to wear them at all times. If a student has not been fully vaccinated and decides that he or she does not want to wear a face mask then he or she will be taking the risk that they will be quarantined for at least eight days and up to ten days after close contact with a student that has tested positive; this depends on whether or not the student gets a negative test result after the fifth day of being quarantined. Most people agreed to the compromise put forth by the school board, until this Monday. 

This Monday, a sophomore student-athlete on the varsity football team tested positive for the Coronavirus. Because of this, the high school football team, consisting of over thirty athletes from grades ninth through twelfth, was sent home and quarantined. This sudden, untimely quarantine has caused the Lewis Cass football team to lose their week one matchup against the Pioneer Panthers, a rival game much anticipated by both communities. The King’s football team, head coached by Lewis Cass alumni and former player Clayton Mannering, were told that they would be virtual learning with the earliest return on Monday, August 23rd. “It’s too bad because I was really looking forward to Friday. I think it was going to be a good game,” said Head Coach Mannering in an interview with Beau Wicker for the Pharos Tribune. Then a change was brought to the school board. 

After hearing the news, members of the community brought the issue to the Lewis Cass school board. A new change was discussed to make an adjustment to the school’s covid policy, specifically the contact tracing among the students. The new change to the policy being discussed at an emergency meeting on Tuesday night would lead to a survey sent out to be answered by all Lewis Cass parents, guardians, and staff members concerning the future of contact tracing. Yesterday, the change to the policy was voted on and passed by the school board; the change includes the quarantine of a student that has come into close contact with a positive student being left up to the parents or guardians of the student. As long as a student is fully vaccinated, has been wearing a mask, or is asymptomatic then he or she will be allowed to remain in school. Moving forward into the 2021- 2022 school year, student-athletes will now be able to continue participating in their sports despite being in close contact with another student. This means that if the rule had been implemented sooner, the asymptomatic players on the King’s football team would be allowed to participate in the competition against the panthers. 

Despite the revision to the Covid-19 guidelines, the quarantined King’s players returning to school today will not change the initial ruling of the game cancelation. Lewis Cass will now look to the week two matchup against the North Miami Warriors. Unfortunately, the original matchup versus the Maconaquah Braves has also been adjusted due to the school’s rise in Covid-19 cases; this led the school to temporarily transition to remote learning. Though the future is unknown, the changes this week seem to help current and future students be able to have their activities become as close to normal as possible. 

 

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