COVID keeps coming, Ridgefield studies low attendance

Ridgefield High School is having relatively few students show up for in-school classes as more families opt to put kids in "Cohort C" which is engaged in temporary remote learning. School officials are considering how to handle the situation.

Ridgefield High School is having relatively few students show up for in-school classes as more families opt to put kids in "Cohort C" which is engaged in temporary remote learning. School officials are considering how to handle the situation.

Macklin Reid / Hearst Connecticut Media

RIDGEFIELD — Three more cases of COVID-19 in three different school buildings — Ridgefield High School, Scotland Elementary School and Branchville Elementary School — were announced by the school system Sunday and Monday, Nov. 29 and 30. The new cases pushes the number of known COVID-19 cases among the Ridgefield schools’ community to 40.

And Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva confirmed Monday afternoon that school officials were looking to develop “a revised plan for low enrollment at RHS.”

While Ridgefield’s six elementary schools are having in-school classes for all students five days a week, the middle and high schools are officially on “hybrid” schedules, with two cohorts alternating between in-school and remote learning, while a third cohort opts to do remote learning from home.

But in-school participation has been dwindling as more RHS families have opted for “Cohort C” — students who are on “temporary remote” participation in classes.

Four of 900

The Ridgefield Public Schools website said Monday morning that there had been four positive COVID-19 tests among more than 900 students and staff placed in 14-days quarantines so far this school year, as the result of potential exposure to some of the 40 students and staff who have tested positive so far this year.

“RPS has had 40 known cases of COVID-19,” the school system’s COVID-19 data tracker said Monday morning about 8:45.

“Over time we have placed 907 students and staff in quarantine after potential exposures in school, on the bus, and at athletic events.

“Four of these 907 have tested positive. We do not know if in-school transmission occurred in these cases. We cannot rule it in or out.”

The new COVID-19 cases announced on the website Sunday and Monday were instances where it was determined that contact tracing wasn’t needed — likely since the individuals weren’t believed to be in school when infectious. The cases listed on the schools’ COVID-19 tracker included:

Ridgefield High School — “RHS, 1 case, no contact tracing needed.” The date that the school system learned of the case was listed as Monday, Nov. 30.

Scotland School — “SES, 1 case. No contact tracing needed.” The school learned of the case on Monday Nov. 30.

Branchville School — “BES, 1 case. No contact tracing needed.” The school system learned of the case Sunday, Nov. 29.