TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — In the days leading up to the first day of school, and in the days after, hundreds of Tampa Bay students and school staff have been testing positive for COVID-19.
On Monday, South Tampa’s Roosevelt Elementary School reported that 10 of its 63 staff members had tested positive for the virus in a single day.
On Thursday morning, Hillsborough County’s school case tracker shows 71 students and 198 employees had tested positive for the virus over the past month.
Pinellas County school officials said four students and 23 staff members received positive test results.
In Pasco County, data shows 85 students and 28 staff members had been infected with COVID-19.
In Sarasota County, 145 students and 39 employees have tested positive or are in isolation, school officials said.
In Citrus County, 25 of the district’s 16,000 students and six employees have tested positive for the virus, according to district leaders.
Several coronavirus case trackers for district schools have not been updated to show Thursday morning’s numbers.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis says regardless of coronavirus numbers, he’s opposed to mask mandates in the state’s public schools. The governor signed an executive order giving the Department of Education the power to withhold funding from school districts with mask mandates.
The CDC recommends all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status.