Maplebrook sees spike in COVID cases

Nathan Yuan, News Editor

Maplebrook Elementary reported 89 cases of student and teacher COVID-19 infections between April 10-16 on Monday, April 18.

Maplebrook conducted SHIELD tests for every day of the week from April 11-15 and allowed families to opt back in if they had previously opted out in response to the increase in cases. Other mitigation measures stayed in place.

“We have continued mitigation efforts in Naperville 203 schools including physical distancing, hand washing, daily disinfecting of classroom surfaces, and proper ventilation,” Maplebrook Principal Araceli Ordaz wrote in an email on April 10.

Maplebrook also “strongly recommended” masks, Superintendent Dan Bridges said at an April 18 board of education meeting.

“Maplebrook is the only school with cases high enough to warrant extra precautions,” Bridges said. “The biggest change is the increase in social distancing in the classrooms as well as common areas. At lunchtime, we had been looking at shifting away from the social distancing that had been in place but we held off on that.”

Additional changes included emphasizing window opening and air circulation, Bridges said at the April 18 board of education meeting.

“The air circulation systems are timed and don’t run as often during unoccupied times, but we maintain that overnight to ensure we had maximum air flow,” Bridges said.

On April 19, Ordaz reported 11 cases between April 15-18. On April 20, Ordaz reported six additional cases identified through SHIELD testing on April 18 and out-of-school testing.

By Wednesday, April 20, Araceli Ordaz told Maplebrook families through email that “student and staff absence rates have returned to a typical level.”