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For the second time in three days, a teacher at Stark Elementary School has tested positive for COVID-19, with 14 more students and two staff members who came in contact with the teacher being send home for 14 days.

On Sept. 14, five staff members and seven students were sent home after a teacher was confirmed as positive.

The second teacher was confirmed on Sept. 16, and contact tracing identified 14 students and two staff members who were within six feet of the teacher for at least 15 minutes. The parents' of the students were notified and they were sent home. The students will transition back to virtual learning for the next two weeks.

Butts County School Superintendent Dr. Todd Simpson said the second teacher was a separate occurrence from the first teacher.

The school system is using protocols developed over the summer months in these situations. Those protocols include the contact tracing and having the instructional spaces impacted undergo a deep and thorough cleaning. Those spaces will remain closed for the next several days.

In an email sent out to parents of students at Stark Elementary, Principal Shannon Daniel stressed that she and her staff are continuing to make it their "top priority to maintain a safe learning environment for all students and staff. It will be important for us to remain committed to practicing our four cornerstones of sustainability - using face coverings, practicing social distancing, frequent hand washing, and avoiding unnecessary risks. Please remember to monitor your student closely for any signs of illness and keep them at home when sick. These measures provide us with the best opportunity to keep everyone healthy and safe during this unique time."

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