NEW YORK - Questions are being raised after it was reported that a teacher, 44 students, and six staff members from James Madison High School in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn spent their winter break in one of the so-called “hot zones” of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy.
When the group returned, only the teacher appeared to be sick, but tests for the coronavirus came back negative. The school was not closed and no-one was quarantined, self-quarantined or otherwise.
Currently, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza say that the students are being monitored and that everyone else at the school is at low risk because no one who went on the trip is sick. They did not say whether the rest of the students would be tested for coronavirus and noted that the 14-day waiting period is almost finished.
However, De Blasio and Carranza were questioned as to why more precautions weren’t taken before the students and the teacher interacted with the rest of the school population.
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Carranza did say that new protocols have been put in place and that they are going back over all of the city’s schools to see what trips were taken and where they went to see if any further steps need to be taken in terms of monitoring.
Finally, two teachers from a different high school in New York City reportedly visited Italy in February and are also being tested for coronavirus. The results of those tests have not yet been released.