- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott said Tuesday that school officials will question returning students about whether they attended gatherings with people outside their household during Thanksgiving to determine if they need to quarantine over coronavirus concerns.

“Unfortunately, we know some will still get together and schools have asked for help,” the Republican governor tweeted Tuesday. “[The Vermont Agency of Education] will direct schools to ask students or parents if they were part of multi-family gatherings and if the answer is yes, they’ll need to go remote for 14 days or 7 days and a test.”

“Maybe you just aren’t worried about getting the virus,” he wrote. “You’re young/healthy, you can work remotely or you just don’t think it’s a big deal. But you never know if you’re going to be the domino that leads to a nursing home outbreak or pushes an entire school to remote learning. Enough of these dominoes put our health care facilities at risk. Protecting our family and friends is in our hands and we all have a role to play. So I’m asking you to help by avoiding getting together with people outside your households and not travel this week.”

Mr. Scott is also postponing the start of school sports “until further notice” and is asking businesses to require employees to quarantine if they attend multi-family gatherings over the holidays.

The governor said he hopes the policies will act as a “deterrent” to keep people in their own homes. Asked whether he thinks it’s encouraging families to lie about their plans or “tattle” on others, he answered, “If you don’t want your kids to have to transition to remote learning and quarantine for seven days maybe you ought to make other plans,” the Bennington Banner reported.

“We’re asking people to tell the truth to protect others. I don’t think that’s tattling,” Mr. Scott said.

“Schools operate on trust,” Secretary of Education Daniel French added. “We are hopeful this will give our schools additional tools to do the right thing and keep students safe.”

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