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Wednesday, August 25, 2021

A tale of two quarantines

 One didn’t happen, and one happened quick and on steroids 

The week before Winter break, I contracted COVID, and yes, I spent my Christmas break wrapped in blankets, very sick, watching 3 seasons of Handmaids Tale. Both were miserable, but I digress.  

When my wife tested positive on Sunday, I immediately let my school know. When I tested positive on Tuesday, I also let them know, and when the DOH contacted me, I explained that my class was immersive, and I was with everyone, and it was paramount they protect my two 65-year-old plus paras. The conversation lasted about a minute, and I kind of gt the vibe I was bothering them. 

I did, however, feel relieved my ladies and students would be taken care of until I realized they didn’t do anything. I had to be infectious around them, my students and staff had to be in danger, and nothing happened.  

Fast forward to this week. 

A staff member in the transition department tested for COVID on Friday, came back positive on Monday. The DOH contacted me within 6 hours to ask about my students and who the staff member worked with. The person I talked to had their names already and asked me lots of questions, which did not happen the first time around. 

That day he called all the families he could get in touch with, and I know because half of the students in my class were absent the next day, and furthermore, every student that came in that wasn’t vaccinated was sent home.  

They had taken the case seriously and worked quickly to make sure everyone was notified and safe. Unlike the first time around, I have zero complaints and was very appreciative, except. 

At the school board meeting, superintendent Green showed a slide that said 14 percent of contacts had been successfully resolved, but roughly 43 percent of cases had just timed out, nothing had been done, and another 43 percent of cases were pending. Both alarming and scary numbers. 

So what made the overwhelming success that happened at my school possible? 

I can’t help but think; maybe it's because I do a dumb little blog, and I am willing to put my opinions out there. It may be hubris on my part, but I wonder what made my case fall into the 13 percent of successful cases when so many others did not.  

Look, I hope I am wrong. I hope what happened Monday is a fresh start and indicative of how things are going to work from now on. I really do. I may be critical of the district, but I am also one of its biggest fans. I know the amazing things that go on and could go on with just a little help, but I also cannot help but think, if my last name wasn’t Guerrieri, we might have been in trouble.  

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Duval's mask mandate comes two weeks two late, sorry make that an entire month

 After a marathon emergency meeting that saw insane people rail against masks and doctors and experts implore their use, the DCPS school board decided to initiate a mask mandate two weeks after school started, which won't start for another two. Weird the district and I have a vastly different meaning of the word emergency.

Some random thoughts. The expert's opinions and medical evidence didn't change from a month ago when the district decided to have a mask mandate with an opt-out that they promptly shot in the foot.  

The opt-out may have actually worked if the district would not have decided there would be no consequences for students who just chose not to wear a mask. That doomed it before it even got started. 

Why does the district give so much deference to the crazy anti maskers? Last night they brought up BLM, Antifa, Rockefeller, A-Rabs, Heart worm medicine, repeatedly referenced the U.S. Constitution, which has absolutely nothing to do with this situation, and Joe Biden at least 4 times and said over and over there is no evidence that masks work when there is tons of it. These are the people that the district has deferred to. It's maddening.

They continue to accommodate them by not starting the mask mandate by this Monday, postponing it for weeks.

However, they probably had to do so because there were only, in my estimation, three mask or bust votes going into the meeting. Joyce and Hershey, who has turned heel, were always nos, Willie, Andersen though JC does she have to go one so much and Jones were yeses, leaving Coker and Pearson left needing some level of convincing.

So we have the mask mandate, though waiting a month is kind of like kissing your cousin, but that's just part of the battle.

A battle we are going to lose unless the school board gets its act together because there is a lot more that needs to be done.

Sunday, August 22, 2021

About those deep cleanings and PPE

 Right or wrong, I sometimes feel like the school board doesn't want to know what is happening. I also sometimes feel as if the super doesn't always want them to know, an assertion that current and former members of the administration have echoed to me. So I know, I asked on several Facebook pages dedicated to local public education about those deep cleanings and the PPE our classrooms are supposed to get and have.  

Note I am not being critical of our hardworking custodial staff, which at my school was down to two for the last few days last week. They are put in an untenable situation and I know are working as hard as they can. To me, it is the district at fault for putting them and our staff and students in no-win situations. 

This is the question I asked.

DCPS teacher friends have those deep cleanings they promised materialized, and has the district provided enough supplies, wipes hand sanitizer, etc. to make you feel comfortable? You can private message me if you want.

Each break represents a separate comment.

Friends and family just asked me about this. We have been given nothing. I dole out sanitizer before and after lunch, end of class, and we wipe down tables and counters between classes. It’s expensive. There are masks for students and adults in the office.

I've gotten nothing. I've seen no deep cleaning. They don't even clean the cafeteria tables.

I can barely get them to clean my bathroom much less deep cleaning. I wipe the student’s tables each morning.

I'm told a new custodian contractor was hired. At my school, we have half the custodial staff that we've had in previous years.

As a mother of a 6th grade science teacher at XXXXXX....I have invested in my daughter's class with a constant stock of wipes, hand sanitizer, hand soap and disinfectant spray. I'm also purchasing an air purifier...We are not relying on the's an investment...but I have to support her as she pushes to educate our children during such a dangerous time!

Given nothing. Had some leftover from last year. No sanitizing I can see. Thrilled the week-dead cock roach was finally swept away.

I had one of those, too. Poor carcass lay there for a week. Proof that no one even swept, much less sanitized.

I am not a teacher but when I attended orientation, all the hand sanitizers were empty. The school was packed to the brim with people. No hand sanitizer to be found.


No, I find the same trash on the floor from the previous day.

Good morning I see everyone wants everyone to wear masks 😷 ( good ) but I see NO one talking about if the school is giving out hand sanitizer, soap and wipes cleaning supplies. I know just in my class I have gone through one bottle of Clorox to clean tables . The janitors are NOT cleaning the tables I don’t see hand sanitizer given out many friends say they bring there own in . I left one table dirty to see if it was there in the morning. YES . With coughing, sneezing and any other bodily fluids it needs cleaned . If germs are on the table and they touch it don’t wash there hands go home rub there mouth guess what they might of picked up Covid. This will help! Pls do NOT use my name just make a post make sure they bring in supplies to clean

No deep cleanings happening at my school. Barely see surface cleanings!! The kids and I do most of the cleaning. I am lucky if they mop my room after sweeping. And no, we are not provided with disinfecting wipes and last year they gave us hand sanitizer, but nothing yet this year. I asked parents to help provide these items, and I have also purchased some too to get me started.

In response to your post. No. I have not seen any deep cleaning. Just our normal custodians. And as for supplies, the only reason I have enough is because I teach elementary, and parents send things in

Hi Chris. No signs of any “deep cleaning” taking place in my room. We were given a bottle of hand sanitizer & a package of alcohol wipes. Our principal told us in one email to be sure to have the kids working in pairs or groups. She reminded us to keep all doors and windows closed at all times. Some of our students who test positive write to us to let us know why they’ll be out but we never hear a peep about it from admin. What was I talking about oh yeah deep cleaning… Nope, not happening.

Our custodials only take the garbage out... if they do.. there is no cleaning or disinfecting whatsoever. They have given me 1 big hand sanitizer and 2 wipe containers. No shields, I've been asking for my desk shield and still have nothing. XXXXX is in the XXXXX the lowest income area, a lot of our students don't come from clean homes. And the school is not helping either

Not only has the deep cleanings promised never showed, but we’re down to 5 custodians when we previously had 6. Last year they at least grabbed the trash daily. As of Friday, mine hadn’t been taken out since Tuesday. Admin is aware of the issues and told us to put in maintenance requests if there were concerns. Off record as I don’t want to be fired. Oh, and I have 250+ students assigned to me, so they’ve traveled through the room twice with no trash pickup.

My school XXXXX hasn’t supplied ANY ppe. No mask ( when I asked they said since it’s not required we don’t supply it) even for students who want to wear a mask but theirs have broken. No sanitizer no nothing! No desk shields (I asked). Not even any seating chart for the cafeteria kids can sit next to any class member any day as long as they sit at the tables designated for my class. Terrible.

lack of custodial staff and cleaning not getting done inside classrooms. Teachers having to do it.

It’s interesting that when it was Covid -19 we were masking, hand sanitizer, wiping desk, had up cubicle protector and supposedly it was not that contagious from hs student to teacher. It was 15 minutes or more around them. Now, with the Delta variation it only takes 8-9 seconds and we really aren’t doing any of that other stuff. Plus, they want us doing groups! I just don’t think groups are safe!

The answer to your question is NO very little soap most likely left over from last year same with hand sanitizer. That will be gone this week . I found half bottle of lysol cleaner 3rd day of school to clean tables . I clean as much as I can . Why , because I don’t want to get sick my self . It’s sad we are not given the stuff to clean with make sure the kids or ourselves get sick . Letters need to go to that parents To bring things in

And I could have gone on.

Now 2 teachers out of the dozens that responded said they were happy with what was happening in their schools. 2

Friends we should either do better or stop pretending we are.

Saturday, August 21, 2021

DCPS admits the DOH hasn't been up for the job. Um, they haven't been up for the job since the beginning of the pandemic.

 In the summer of 20, a school board member told me the DOH was not returning the district's calls when it asked for help and guidance. This same school board member would later say repeatedly that they depended on the DOH for its contact tracing. They passed the buck despite the fact from day one, the DOH was not up for the job, and everyone knew it. Infuriating and reckless.

Spoiler alert the DOH is still not up to the job, so finally, the district is making a change, a change I have urged them to make a half dozen times, a change which, if we think about it, is only slightly above insignificant.

From the Times Union,

 Duval County Public Schools officials say the Duval County health department hasn't been able to keep up with the pace of COVID-19 contact tracing since school started last week. Now, the district is launching new mitigation strategies at elementary schools to compensate. 

On Friday afternoon, the district released two new policies that will go into effect by Wednesday. 

First, the district said if a case impacts an elementary school, families of classmates will receive a letter informing them of the case. The letter will not be a "quarantine or 'stay-at-home' order" but will let families be aware of the increased possibility a student might have been in close contact with someone who presumably tested positive for COVID-19.

Notifying families is a baby step in the right direction, and it is something they should have been doing since the beginning, but why only in elementary schools? Do middle school and high school families not deserve to know? Then none of this is a replacement for proper contact tracing.

DCPS by a country mile is behind every other district that has started the school year. I recently did a piece that showed Hillsborough is quarantining 5 people for every one case and Palm Beach 20, while DCPS in a criminally bad effort, less than one. 

We can and should be doing better, and if the people in charge can't or don't want to, they should be replaced.

Thursday, August 19, 2021

The absolute nonsense DCPS would have people belive.

 As always, check the math, but...

 With 220 cases reported in the first week, DCPS quarantined only 43 people. On average, the district said each infected person came in close contact with one-fifth of one person. The district is saying somehow the infected managed to stay away from just about everyone.

Let me give you some scale. Hillsborough is quarantining 5 people for every one case of covid.

From Action News 8:

The number of students in Hillsborough County quarantined or in isolation for COVID-19 exposure has risen to 8,400.

The district is now tracking 1,603 cases dating back to Aug. 2 as of 8 p.m. on Tuesday night.

Even with just five to one, they are quarantining people at a rate nearly 25 times what we are.

Now let's look at Palm Beach

From CBS News,

Just a few days into the academic year, hundreds of students in Palm Beach County, Florida, have been told to go into quarantine because of COVID-19 cases at their schools. Nearly 700 kids were sent home due to possible COVID exposure on Tuesday, the first day of school, followed by over 400 on Wednesday and more than 900 on Thursday. On Friday the number sent home was 1,020, the district reported.

As of Friday, there were 134 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 26 employees and 105 students, according to the district's COVID-19 dashboard. The cases have been confirmed in 60 of the district's facilities and K-12 schools.

Palm Beach County quarantines over 3000 students and staff for 134 confirmed cases. That's over 20 to one.

DCPS had more cases and quarantined a minute fraction of that number.

Who wants to bet when comparing numbers DCPS isn't just quarantining the fewest, but they are doing so by a country mile.


Tuesday, August 17, 2021

DCPS is risking lives, I said it but we are all thinking and know it

 The stories I have heard are both heartbreaking and infuriating, sick parents of exposed children kept in the dark, and a terminally ill child left to fend for herself as the department of health drags their heels. Then just throw in the run of the mill danger that the district seems quite content to put staff and students in and we have beyond a recipe for disaster.

I received this over the weekend.

Chris, I have loved reading your posts over this past year. I am an elementary school teacher in Duval. My para just tested positive for Covid yesterday, and I have been told I cannot tell my parents/ students. Meanwhile, one of their mothers is severely immunocompromised. I am flabbergasted because my assistant was everywhere in the classroom working with all the children. My gut tells me the whole class should quarantine, but no one will help or tell me anything. We just have to wait 3-4 days at least for DOH to tell us what to do.

This teacher is not allowed to reach out to her families and let them know. The Superintendent and school board think waiting for the DOH to contact them is the route to go when they have proved over the last year they are not up for the job.   

I just got off the phone with a teacher who told me one of the staff in their child classroom tested positive last Thursday and as of yet nobody has reached out to them, they just hoped and prayed they reached out to the child with cancer in the room. 

Why can't teachers tell their families and at very least let them decide what to do? That is the decent and right thing. 

I literally just had this conversation on Facebook. I am the blue.

Just wanted to share about your post on reporting Covid numbers. I personally have 2 confirmed positives in my class, but 6 others also out sick and they can come back at anytime because we are told we can no longer ask them to get tested. Our school is only reporting 5 on the dashboard but just from 2 others classrooms close to mine, there are 7 other confirmed cases. That’s a total of 9 just in our three classes.

You sent

and your classes has anybody been quarantined?


It’s been hard to go into work everyday and be happy for the students with the “leadership.” No quarantining has taken place at all for my classroom and I had two more positives reported today.


I was told they can’t do anything or notify anyone until the Department of Health tells them to.

You sent

The super and board are nothing but cowards for passion the buck to the DH who we all know are not up for the job and shame on them all.