Florida officials urge quarantine after possible coronavirus exposure at massive graduation ceremony
Florida considered new US coronavirus epicenter
The state of Florida is seeing a spike in coronavirus cases as leaders weigh new lockdown restrictions amid the surge; Phil Keating reports on the latest.
Nearly 300 Florida high school graduates and their families were asked to quarantine after an individual who attended a graduation ceremony in Pelham Bay on Saturday tested positive for coronavirus.
Families of Bayside High School graduates received a letter from the Florida Department of Health in Brevard County on Monday after the health department was informed of the positive case.
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“Because your child was possibly exposed to someone at the school who had COVID-19, DOH-Brevard is notifying parents of exposed attendees that their child needs to quarantine at home for 14 days from their last day of attendance at the facility. If COVID-19 symptoms develop seek medical attention immediately.”
— Florida Department of Health in Brevard County
“Because your child was possibly exposed to someone at the school who had COVID-19, DOH-Brevard is notifying parents of exposed attendees that their child needs to quarantine at home for 14 days from their last day of attendance at the facility. If COVID-19 symptoms develop seek medical attention immediately," the letter obtained by Fox News states in part.
"An individual who attended the Bayside High School graduation ceremony tested positive shortly after attending. The Florida Department of Health was notified about the positive case by Brevard Public Schools and we confirmed the positive result in our lab reporting system," Anita Stremmel, assistant county health department director, told Fox News in a statement.
At least one graduate said socially distancing guidelines were not uniformly adhered to.
There are “many venues for COVID testing should anyone need or want to be tested, including drive-thru testing at our Viera clinic," Stremmel added.
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The ceremony was held outdoors on a football field, and school officials told local WOGX-TV FOX 51 that safety guidelines were followed. But some graduates told the news outlet that not everyone followed social distancing rules.
“They lined us up basically shoulder to shoulder and some kids were taking their masks off,” one graduate told the local station.
The news outlet also reported that the nearly 300 graduating students were allowed two guests, and approximately 30 faculty members were in attendance during Saturday’s ceremony.
Florida ranks second in the country with a total of 436,867 reported cases, according to official estimates.