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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

Arkansas schools already dealing with positive COVID-19 cases among students

It sheds light on the reality that once schools starts, we may see continuous policy changes as administrators work to keep students and faculty safe.

ARKANSAS, USA — School hasn't even started yet, but Russellville and Beebe School Districts say they're already working to handle positive cases among students.

"We may be in the classroom one day and then virtual the next day," said Chris Nail, Superintendent of Beebe School District.

How schools will handle positive COVID cases has been on on-going discussion.

"We were informed that we had a student-athlete that tested positive. This is the second case that we've had," said Nail.

The Russellville School District is facing a similar issue.

"My cheer coach told me that she had had some of her cheerleaders testing positive for the COVID," said Johnny Johnson, Russellville School District Athletic Director.

For now, both schools are taking steps to minimize the spread.

"We have shut down athletics until Monday to allow the district to go in and clean all athletic facilities and deep clean," Nail said.

"We have a protocol where we're able to call the hotline and deal with the Department of Health, the Department of Education," Johnson said.

It sheds light on the reality that once schools starts, we may see continuous policy changes as administrators work to keep student-athletes safe.

"We're living in uncharted territory," said Nail.

For now, they'll keep reporting cases to ADH and follow their lead.

"We'll continue to screen every athlete that comes to practice everyday and obviously, the safety and welfare of our student-athletes is our number one priority," said Johnson.

Governor Asa Hutchinson says more guidance on contact sports will be given Friday.

"The most important thing for us all to do is try to stay as positive as we possibly can and really try to be transparent in how we communicate what's going on," Nail added.

The Arkansas Activities Association says they'll continue to follow ADH guidelines.