Governor Carney Discusses Schools, Testing for Businesses and the NJ Quarantine List

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Image courtesy Delaware.gov

During this week’s coronavirus update, Governor John Carney spoke briefly on the upcoming school reopening and what might be forthcoming. There are three scenarios regarding community spread that will guide them. Minimal spread – would allow school buildings to open for in-person instruction. Minimal to moderate spread – schools might use a hybrid model of remote and in-person learning with precautions in place. Significant spread – school will be closed – with only remote learning in place. As things stand right now – the Governor says the minimal to moderate scenario is the most likely – but that is subject to change. In order for schools to reopen – we have to take actions today to reduce the spread – wear a face mask and social distance. He also says that it would be more helpful to have recommendations from the CDC on the criteria to identify community spread from the CDC – which is not available – but may be forthcoming.

After just coming off New Jersey’s quarantine list – Delaware has been placed on it again and during this week’s coronavirus update, Governor Carney says that’s got him ‘mad as hell.’ He says that New Jersey’s Governor heard from him again saying that the couple of upticks in numbers, which are just above the threshold on 2 separate days, are actually lower than the numbers that they put Delaware on the quarantine list for the first time – and lower than the numbers last week when Delaware was removed from the list. Gov. Carney says that the only way Delaware will stay off the NJ list right now is if testing is stopped and that isn’t going to happen.

Some organizations are upset that their events had to be canceled – but the Delaware State Fair gets a green light to go on. Gov. Carney says that a lot has to do with the ability to control the environment in which an event occurs. He used the Wyoming Peach Festival parade as an example where people are shoulder to shoulder along the street – and there really aren’t monitors that would be able to social distance the crowd. However the Delaware State Fair goes on over a 10 day period – most of it outside. This year the big grandstand events have been canceled and with the exception of the midway – much of this year’s fair will resemble more of a 4-H/FFA gathering. Exhibits will be spread out, capacity limited at indoor venues and sanitizer and hand washing stations will be set up around the grounds. Bathrooms will be staffed and cleaned, face masks are mandatory – as is social distancing. Spot cleaning and disinfecting of common touch points – benches, tables, railings, etc. will also be done.

Testing guidance is available for businesses.  During this week’s coronavirus update, DEMA Director A. J. Schall says there is information available to what businesses can do to test their employees as people begin to reoccupying their work places. Businesses and employers are encouraged to coordinate with public health and DEMA to determine the most appropriate recommendations for employee testing based on a variety of factors – including risk category and size.  Schall says they’ve received about 10 inquiries in the past week.  Click here for the DPH coronavirus testing page.