Washington County Schools, Tenn. monitoring COVID-19 conditions, will start online dashboard next week

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JONESBOROUGH, Tenn. (WJHL) – Washington County, Tennessee Schools is not making any changes to its COVID-19 policies at this time, but it will start an online dashboard next week.

Masks are optional at Washington County Schools. Right now, health officials recommend masking for everyone regardless of vaccination status.

There were rumors that the mask policy would be discussed at Thursday night’s school board meeting, but Director of Schools Jerry Boyd said masks were not even on the agenda.

“Right now, the board is continuing what they’ve already passed, which is our current COVID protocols,” Boyd said.

He estimated that less than 25 percent of students and faculty are masked.

The online dashboard will be similar to the one used by the district last year. Boyd said it will include weekly updates on the number of students and faculty in isolation and the confirmed positive COVID cases.

Boyd said the district is in communication with local health officials through weekly briefings. If the district decides to change its policy, it must be approved by the school board. Boyd wants that to be a transparent process.

“We want everyone to be informed when we get to the point that we might have to make a different decision,” Boyd said. “Even though we hope we don’t have to, the reality is that it could be a very real conversation for us in the future.”

Right now, five students and six faculty members are out with COVID-19, according to Boyd.

“We certainly hope it continues to be that level, we hate that there’s even that level, but that’s something we’re going to continue to monitor,” Boyd said.

Johnson City Schools will also implement an online COVID dashboard starting Friday.

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