OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (TNN) - A press conference was held at the Oklahoma state capitol on Tuesday to announce an update on COVID-19 quarantine guidelines for Oklahoma schools.
Governor Kevin Stitt, Commissioner of Health Dr. Lance Frye and Secretary of Education Ryan Walters announced an updated policy that will allow Oklahoma schools following safety protocols, including mask-wearing and social distancing to skip quarantining those who have potentially been exposed to COVID-19, unless the individual is showing symptoms.
Schools are encouraged to continue to require a quarantine period for those exposed to COVID-19 in situations where masks and social distancing were not followed.
The updated quarantine guidance does not apply if the exposure occurs during after-school activities, including sports. Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must continue to isolate regardless where they contracted the virus or were wearing a mask.
“Even though the CDC said it’s safe to send students back to the classroom, some districts are refusing to let their parents return their kids to the classroom. We’re seeing the consequences of those choices and it breaks my heart. In Oklahoma City public schools 66% of high school students have an “F” in one of their classes compared to last year. These kids are struggling and it’s not their fault they need to be in the classroom with teachers,” said Governor Stitt.
Authorities are working to get teachers 65 and older vaccinated as soon as this week, and they will start vaccinating other teachers as soon as the vaccine supply is available.
They are also working on increasing the supply of masks and PPE made available to schools.