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More than 200 families to quarantine from Chaparral High School due to COVID-19 exposure

Eighteen student cases have been reported, 10 of which were at school at least one day during the past week.

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz — Chaparral High School will be contacting 219 families to quarantine the children in their homes after 18 total positive student COVID-19 cases have been reported. 

On Friday, the Maricopa County Department of Health informed the Scottsdale Unified School District that there were 18 student cases with four new positives since Thursday. 

“I don’t know other people’s immune systems. I don’t what they can and can’t handle,” said Firebird sophomore Maci Cribbins. “I don’t know what kind of family members they have around because I know if I was around my grandparents that I would be really nervous about that.”  

Ten of the 18 were at school at least one day during the week resulting in the mass quarantine instruction. 

At this time, the MCDPH does not recommend that the district close Chaparral High School. 

One parent choosing to remain anonymous expressed concern over the SUSD's handling of the pandemic. 

"We have two children at Chaparral high school. Prior to fall break we were given two options for back to school learning: to either attend the in-person morning session which consisted of 74 minute periods or attend the afternoon at-home option (EDL) which consisted of 36 minute periods. The choice was not really a choice. We chose the in-person learning option because our students are honor students enrolled in AP classes and we felt that the EDL significantly limited their interaction with their teachers, their class time, and forced the students to learn the material on their own. 

Additionally, several teachers recommended the in-person options for those students in AP and honors classes. When comparing the EDL option to the in-person option, there was an obvious and clear academic advantage gained by attending school in-person. After being back to school for one week, however, we are forced to have our children use the EDL option due to the widespread exposure of the virus. We are not surprised by this however, given the fact that the school did not follow through on the safety guidelines they said they would such as requiring social distancing at school both during and in between classes and sanitizing the desks in between class periods.

We are puzzled by the fact that at no time, did Chaparral or SUSD consider having the teachers live stream the morning classes as they did prior to fall break. This would have allowed students to attend school in-person and allow those students at home to attend the same lecture with their teachers. SUSD has the technology and capability of live streaming classes. At a minimum, the teachers could have set up the zoom links on their computers as they did prior to fall break so that students could attend the live morning lecture virtually.
We are concerned about the quality of our children's education during this required quarantine and expect Chaparral and SUSD to create virtual classrooms so that teachers can live stream and all students, whether attending in-person or from home, can obtain the same level, quality, and amount of teaching."

On Monday SUSD Superintendent Dr. Scott Menzel sent parents a lengthy letter regarding COVID-19 cases in the community. The district says it's behavior outside the school that raises concerns. 

“The false choices of pretending that COVID is not a threat and, therefore, living as though it is no more of a challenge than the flu, or closing everything down until we have a vaccine, undermine the thoughtful and balanced approach that is necessary for our community to weather this storm and come through on the other side stronger as a result,” said Dr. Menzel.