On September 14th Cypress Ranch saw its first Covid positive case. Since then, according to the Cy Fair ISD website, as of November 3rd, there have been 27 reported positive confirmed covid-19 tests from 19 students and 8 staff members at Cypress Ranch. At this time, more Covid positive cases have occurred at Ranch than all CFISD campuses so far, followed by Cy Creek with 22 cases.
The school has sent out email notifications to staff and parents to alert them when a student that has tested positive for Covid was present on campus with the virus. The emails also remind students and staff to watch out for symptoms related to the virus and to stay home when feeling ill. These emails were sent on September 16th, September 21st, September 23rd, September 28th, October 13th, October 14th, October 15th, October 19th, October 20th, October 23rd, October 30th and November 2nd. The pattern for cases per week are as followed:
9/14-9/20: 1 case
9/21-9/27: 3 cases
9/28-10/4: 3 cases
10/5-10/11: 4 cases
10/12-10/18: 7 cases
10/19-10/25: 6 cases
10/26-11/1: 3 cases
The school district has implemented the LEAD safely plan which pushes for all Cy Fair schools to take safety precautions to protect students and staff during this pandemic. It orders for all classrooms to have desk shields separating students, requires masks for everyone in the building, offers online classes for less of a crowded environment at school, has hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies readily available in all classrooms and it orders safe social distancing to take place when possible at all schools.
“Remember, that new cases are not necessarily the result of students being exposed at school. Our students are doing a great job of wearing masks and using desk shields in the classroom. Often times exposure happens when protocols are relaxed at activities not related to Cypress Ranch. We will continue to follow the district’s LEAD Safely plan. We obviously want our students to be safe. Unfortunately, we are fighting against something we cannot see. We are constantly having discussions to make sure safety protocols are in place, ” Principal Maness says.
While it isn’t clear exactly whom has gotten the virus due to names being sealed for privacy concerns, students and staff should try to be cautious at all possible times because it is uncertain who you could have come in contact with that has the virus.
“We all have to do our part by wearing masks and social distancing. If you don’t feel good or know that you have been exposed to someone with COVID, stay at home and connect online,” Principal Maness says.
Students and teachers are not the only ones at school that have had to adjust to Covid-19 being present at school. The school nurse is someone whom has been directly affected and arguably, the most exposed to the situation due to the nature of her job.
“We have a few students every day that come in not feeling well. Since Covid symptoms are very similar to other common illnesses it is hard to say without students getting tested if it is really a covid case or not. It is a parent choice whether a student is tested or not if they go home. Parents are contacted and usually pick up the student to go home and advised to stay home until they are feeling better,” school nurse Mrs. Baird says.
It is important to be aware of the most common symptoms and also get tested even if you don’t experience any symptoms, because it can take the virus up to two weeks before symptoms start showing, and by then, it could have been spread to other people.
“Headache and sore throat are the most common complaints. We are also in peak allergy season so these symptoms not uncommon for this time of year,” school nurse Mrs. Baird says.
Healthcare workers have been drastically affected by the pandemic and the impact it has had all over the world. The job of a healthcare worker during this time definitely is not easy.
“Even though we have opened our doors for on campus learning, the pandemic did not stop. This seems to be a concept that a lot of people forget. In addition to my usual tasks and deadlines I have to meet every year, I now am processing covid related paperwork for the district, answering phone calls and questions from parents and staff, communicating with the health department and district health services on the latest cases and trends, working with administration on contact tracing and much more,” school nurse Mrs. Baird says.
There have been various safety protocols being implemented for the sports department at Cy Ranch. Coaches have to provide daily screening forms to all athletes, masks are to be worn at all times when not actively participating in an activity, locker rooms are to be supervised by coaches at all times, transportation to athletic contests can be provided by students’ parents instead of having to take the bus and any coach or athlete that tests positive must complete a mandatory quarantine and checkup by a physician.
“The district has tirelessly looked at different guidelines and recommendations to come up with and implement a safe plan for school attendance. It only is effective if we all do our part in staying home if we wake up not feeling well, wear our mask correctly, use desk shields in class, wash our hands frequently, and maintain our safe social distancing,” school nurse Mrs. Baird says.
How do students feel about the Covid cases at school? Do mustangs that are attending school in-person still feel safe at school now that these cases have been reported?
“I have heard about the cases through the school letters that are emailed to my parents and through friends. It’s frightening that so many have gotten it, so I’m going virtual for the grading period. I don’t feel safe. I’m going to switch to online because I’m getting stressed about the new cases and don’t want to risk anything,” Senior Jessica Baca says.
Many students that still choose to attend school in-person do so because they believe an in-person learning environment is required to meet all their academic needs.
“I have heard about the active Covid cases at Ranch. I mean, I was honestly expecting it but that hasn’t changed my mind about attending school because I feel like I learn a lot better here then I would at home. So nothing is really going to make me ‘change my mind,'” Senior Jasmine Flores says.
Whether you are an at-home learner or an in-person student, please remember to always stay safe!
For further information on the district’s approach to Covid-19 with the LEAD safely plan, click here.
To stay up-to-date about Covid positive cases in CFISD, visit this website. Note that this website only updates about once a week.