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ALACHUA COUNTY ‒ More nurses will be deployed to Alachua County Public Schools this fall to support COVID mitigation efforts thanks to a new collaboration between the district and the Alachua County Health Department.

The Health Department has hired 30 nurses to work in local schools for the upcoming academic year. They will be joining the nurses who already work at each of the district’s schools.

The additional nurses will be taking on most of the COVID-related tasks at schools, including contact tracing, testing, vaccination support and education. During the last school year, much of that work had to be done by school administrators and other staff members.

“This will be an enormous benefit for our schools,” said Superintendent Dr. Carlee Simon. “With this additional support, principals and other staff members can focus on the educational needs of students while still promoting the health of everyone at their school.”

Paul Myers, administrator of the Health Department, says the ongoing collaboration between his department, the district and other partners is critical to mitigating the impact of COVID. Those partners include the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners, the Florida Department of Health, the University of Florida and UF Health.

“We are collectively building upon the successful reopening of our local K-12 schools,” said Myers. “We have demonstrated that through coordinated efforts, the detrimental effects of COVID-19 can be minimized and the critical in-person instruction of our children can continue.”

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