US Teacher Source of COVID-19 Outbreak at School, CDC Says

A U.S. teacher who read aloud to her students while not wearing a mask is serving as a cautionary tale as schools across the country begin to open for the new school year.In May, an unvaccinated teacher in an elementary school in California’s Marin County read aloud to her students after removing her mask, despite a school mandate requiring everyone to wear a mask while indoors.The teacher became symptomatic on May 19, according to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report.  She continued to work for two days before taking a COVID-19 test on May 21. The teacher tested positive for the delta variant.On May 23, the school began receiving reports of COVID-19 cases from students, parents, teachers and staff associated with the school. Marin County Public Health conducted contact tracing that included whole genome sequencing.The CDC report says 26 cases were found to be connected with the teacher, including 12 of her students. In her classroom, “the attack rate” in the two rows of students closest to her was 80%, the report said, and 28% in the three back rows.Students in another classroom also tested positive for the coronavirus. All the students in both classes were too young to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations.Meanwhile, England’s Office for National Statistics says coronavirus infections in the country are 26 times higher this year than they were last year at this time. Officials are warning that the imminent opening of schools and universities could cause the caseload to grow.On Sunday, India’s health ministry reported 45,083 new COVID-19 cases in the previous 24 hours.India has more than 32 million COVID cases, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. Only the U.S. has more, with 38.7 million, Johns Hopkins reports, and the U.S. reported 49,712 new cases in the past 24 hours.


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