Lee's Summit R-7 School District reinstates mask mandate in district

Lee's Summit R-7 School District Tony L. Stansberry Leadership Center.jpg
Posted at 5:32 PM, Jan 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-06 22:50:17-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Lee's Summit R-7 School District Board of Education voted 6-1 Thursday to reinstate a mask mandate in the district until Feb. 3.

In the meeting Thursday night, the board received an update on COVID-19 cases in the district as the omicron variant spreads.

During the first three days of school since returning from winter break, 247 students have tested positive for COVID-19 and 406 students were close contacts to a positive case. Also, 58 staff have tested positive and 47 were close contacts.

According to the presentation, the district has only hit above 406 quarantines in one week three other times since the start of the pandemic — in mid-November 2020 (726), late January 2021 (414) and early March 2021 (401).

The district set up a testing site Thursday for staff who were unable to get a test due to the increased demand for testing in the area. As of 2 p.m., 99 staff utilized the testing site, and 24 tested positive.

On Wednesday, the district had 155 teachers out, and they were unable to fill in for 34 teachers.

The board previously voted down a motion to extend universal masking for kindergarten through 12th-grade students during the Nov. 18th meeting, but then extended the mask mandate for only prekindergarten through elementary school until Dec. 21.