Fairhope parents react to higher COVID-related absences in schools

Baldwin County

FAIRHOPE, Ala. (WKRG) — After a 10-day break for Thanksgiving, almost 250 students and staff were absent from school Monday with COVID-related symptoms. Eighty-eight, or about a third, of those cases were in Fairhope.

Thirty-six schools reported absences Monday and it was by far the highest numbers yet in Baldwin County Schools but still less than one percent of the total student population, not counting the 4,000 employees.

Parents of Fairhope students spoke to WKRG News 5 about the spike in numbers incuding Jill O’Hanlon. “With the holidays and the colder weather it’s understandable. Being from Maryland, the politics are little bit different down here so we do see people without masks on in stores, gathering more and the numbers have been growing in the community as well. So, it’s just something to keep in mind. I don’t think it’s anything to panic about.”

Chelsea Lucason’s kids go to J. Larry Newton School. “I’m not concerned I mean, they usually wind up with the flu or some kind of illness but actually this year neither of my children have had any type of illness.”

Anna Clark moved recently to Fairhope from Atlanta because of the school system. “I can’t raise my children in fear or the fear of being exposed to COVID. We’re either going to get it or the vaccine.”

All of the parents attribute the spike in COVID numbers to what is happening outside of the schools and most worry because of that at some point the school system will be forced to close.

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