Local health authorities advised the San Felipe Del Rio Consolidated Independent School District Board of Trustees to have proper control measures for classes, while sharing information and current statistics for COVID-19 cases in the city of Del Rio.

Tuesday night, during a school board meeting, Dr. J.J. Gutierrez and M.D. Laura Palau advised board members the school district needs to have proper infection control measures and guarantee parents are not sending kids to school if anyone in the family is experiencing COVID-like symptoms or tested positive for the virus.

Gutierrez and Palau added an individual that tests positive for the virus needs to be isolated immediately while contacting the local health authority, quarantining high risk exposure contacts and have the contacts tested for the virus especially if they show symptoms.

A person would be allowed to return to work or school once they are released by the local health authority, according to Gutierrez and Palau. The advice was provided as board members later discussed the possibility of having students transition to traditional and or hybrid classroom settings on Sept. 16.

Only students that opted for the traditional or hybrid classroom options would be transitioned into a regular classroom.

Gutierrez and Palau also shared recent statistics and numbers during the workshop and special meeting on Tuesday afternoon.

The death rate in the city is plateauing and 91 COVID-related deaths are waiting on confirmation, according to the doctors.

Hospitalization also decreased since July and as of Tuesday the positivity rate for COVID-19 was 19.129 percent. Palau added testing is also decreasing in the community.

“People don’t want to test anymore. I believe they don’t want to quarantine,” Palau said.

According to Palau, average age for COVID patients was 29 years old, but the average age is now 47.

Overall, 39 percent of people that tested positive were exposed to COVID through family, 34 percent were exposed to COVID through a daycare, six percent were exposed to COVID through the community, 19 percent exposed to COVID through work and one percent through other means.

The average age of school staff that was tested for COVID was 43, according to Palau, adding 70 percent of them were exposed to COVID through work and 30 percent were exposed to the virus by family or within the household.

“We’re clearly not out of the woods yet,” Gutierrez said, adding the city is in a better situation now than it was in July.

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