There have been four confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Moore Norman Technology as of Friday, according to an MNTC spokesperson.
The four cases are students currently quarantining, MNTC Marketing Coordinator Anna Aguilar said. Aguilar said there were zero in-person cases of COVID-19 reported from the start of classes on Aug. 18 through Sept. 17 at either of MNTC's campuses.
According to MNTC’s School Startup Plan, active cases of COVID-19 are required to quarantine for 10 days from the onset of symptoms, and cannot return to campus until they have been asymptomatic for 24 hours and have had no fever for 72 hours. The plan also outlines quarantine protocol for suspected cases of COVID-19 and for students and staff who may have been exposed to the virus.
As a part of MNTC’s new COVID-19 protocols, students and staff are required to wear masks and practice social distancing, MNTC Superintendent Brian Ruttman said. All students and staff are also required to complete an online health screening prior to arriving on campus, according to the MNTC’s School Startup Plan.
The screening asks questions regarding symptoms and potential exposure to COVID-19.
“If we have a student that arrives that has completed the health screening and answered [yes] to any of the questions on there, we have a COVID response team that meets with them, talks to them about their symptoms, and determines whether it’s appropriate for them to stay at school or if it’s something where they need to go home,” Ruttman said.
On Friday, Cleveland County entered its third straight week at an Orange Level 2 on the State Department of Education’s color-coded monitoring system, which utilizes data from the State Department of Health.
Ruttman said while MNTC is aware there will be positive cases of COVID-19 this year, it is working to strictly enforce its new protocols.
“We have taken a pretty aggressive stance to basically operate full-time like we are at an Orange Level 2 by the state department’s guidelines,” Ruttman said. “It’s worked well for us. We know we’re going to have some cases, but we try to protect students’ rights and try to track and trace appropriately and get the information out to the appropriate folks for decision making.”
The School Startup Plan includes an outlined plan for if it becomes necessary to transition to blended or fully-remote learning. Ruttman said MNTC faculty worked over the summer to transition some of its curriculum to utilize blended learning.
“We’re making better use of our learning management systems, which allows students to access our curriculum and instruction tools remotely through the internet,” Ruttman said. “It’s really provided a means for us to be better prepared in case this ever occurs again. It is a very challenging year for us, but we’re making the best of it."
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