Metro Des Moines School Districts Reducing Quarantines with New Policy

DES MOINES, Iowa - Metro Des Moines school districts are reporting sharply lower quarantine levels of students since the state relaxed requirements.

Governor Kim Reynolds announced an easing of quarantine guidelines after school superintendents complained about disruptions.

The Ankeny, Johnston, Urbandale and Waukee districts are showing fewer students and staff in quarantine after reporting hundreds every week.

The lower numbers come after the policy change where people in close contact with positive cases no longer have to quarantine if both parties were wearing face masks when they interacted.

The districts have differing class arrangements, with some offering a choice between in-person and online learning, or a combination of both.

The Waukee district says it's had low levels of COVID-19 cases, even though 80 percent of families opted for full time in-person classes. It's currently reporting six positive cases out of more than 9,000 in-person students.

The Ankeny and Bondurant-Farrar districts are now conducting a mix of online and in-person classes, but have announced a return to full time in-person learning. Both will start with pre-K through 5th grades on October 19th.

Des Moines Public Schools is currently holding classes entirely online, but will start mixing in face-to-face instructions with younger students next week. High school students in Des Moines will start 50 percent in-person classes November 10th.

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