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More than 100 Patrick Henry Charter School students in quarantine

Posted at 4:06 PM, Aug 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-20 12:27:22-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Nine classrooms at Patrick Henry Charter School of Arts and Science in South Richmond were placed in quarantine, and students were sent home to virtual learning in an effort to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks.

That action came after nearly a dozen students and one teacher at the school tested positive for the virus, school leaders have confirmed. Patrick Henry Charter School is in its third week of classes.

While the exact number of students sent home was not shared, the school has 335 students, and classroom sizes range from 13 to 20 students.

“I mean yeah, it’s concerning and it’s frightening," parent Kelli Joford said after she dropped her daughter off at school Thursday morning. “We made the decision a couple of months ago that we would send our daughter back to school in person. It’s hard, but our kids need each other and their teachers.”

Ann-lyssa Hill, who serves on the Patrick Henry Charter School Board of Directors, said they're working to increase safety measures while following CDC guidelines.

"This includes the disinfecting of the spaces, the distancing of the children, the 100%, masks on all the time compliance, except when you're eating, of course," Hill said. "We're working very closely with the principal and her staff."

Hill said students who are in quarantine at home will learn virtually along with any other students who may contract the virus.

"I think that is wise and is a conservative approach but until we better understand what we're dealing with, I think it's good and hopefully things will just get better," Joford added.

Patrick Henry Charter School falls under guidance from Richmond Public Schools, so all teachers and staff must be vaccinated by October 1.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.