MELBOURNE, Fla. - Parents and students in Brevard County say quarantines are taking healthy kids out of school and they’re falling behind.
One school board member says it may be time to change how they’re doing things.
"I’m completely healthy. There’s no reason I should be sitting at home doing nothing," said one student during Tuesday night’s board meeting.
"You are not doing your jobs and educating our children," a woman told the school board.
According to the district’s dashboard, 3,401 quarantines were issued in the last three days.
The total since school started is 11,704, which is about 14% of all students and staff.
"Is there a way we can keep healthy kids in school and still monitor the amount of children getting COVID," said school board member Matt Susin.
The Department of Health determines the criteria for quarantine.
"Currently, right now at 6 feet, that’s 113 square feet of space that we are quarantining. If one student is in the middle of the classroom, that will take out the whole class," Susin said.
He wants the DOH to consider changing contact tracing from six feet to three.
Susin is also pushing for more testing locations so that healthy kids who test negative can head back to school faster.
"Right now, in our county, there is nowhere for individuals who are healthy to take the test because we’re only testing symptomatic kids," Susin said.
Brevard County school officials say they don’t have data on how many kids in quarantine actually get COVID.
One teacher and mom says there’s another way to address this problem.
"I want the kids in school too, you know? If we have masking, they could stay in school more because there’s less COVID spreading," Sarah Wray said.
Masks were also a hot topic at the school board meeting. They are optional in Brevard schools.