FOWLERVILLE, Mich. (WXYZ) — If you are exposed to COVID-19 you will not necessarily be sent home from school. That is the new policy in Fowlerville Community Schools.
The District’s Board of Education voted to stop quarantines for asymptomatic students. It is a decision that has parents divided. It also goes against the Livingston County Health Department’s recommendations.
“We need to leave these decisions to the public health experts because that is what they do,” said Tonya Defever.
Defever says she is homeschooling her daughter because Fowlerville Schools is not following the advice of even the health department.
“I am just going to keep her out for this year. It is a hot mess,” she said.
“I am very hesitant to send her to school. I feel like it is an unsafe situation,” said Crystal Ward.
Ward is also deciding whether her daughter will stay in school.
The Fowlerville School Board’s vote comes after a study. The Livingston County Health Department tracked when people got sick from close contacts in schools. It found the secondary attack rate ranged from 1.6% - 2.2% when contact tracing impacted everyone within six feet.
Last month, it reduced the radius to three feet and the secondary attack rate ranged from 1.9% - 2.8%.
The Livingston County Health Department says it approved a pilot program to stop sending kids home - based on this preliminary data but only for children ages twelve and up, who have had a chance if their parents choose to get vaccinated.
Not all parents are opposed to the district’s decision.
“If they aren’t taught the information how are they supposed to do their homework at home?” said Emily Gardner, a Fowlerville Mom.
Gardner says sending kids home hurts learning and notification of possible exposure was slow for her daughter.
“What was really funny was they didn’t even get a hold of me until 5 days later,” she said.
All parents WXYZ spoke to have one thing in common. They all want what is best for their children. They just have come to different conclusions about what is best for their children in a system they all share.
“We all want the same thing. We all want this to be done. And we want to move on. We want our kids healthy in school. We all want this. And I think if we can keep this in mind a little longer, we’re going to get through this,” said Ward.
Fowlerville Community Schools Superintendent Wayne Roedel tells WXYZ the new policy goes into effect Wednesday. The letters below were sent home to parents on Tuesday.
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