The rise in COVID-19 cases across Louisiana may not immediately affect Pointe Coupee Parish schools, but it could have an impact on two major events in the New Roads area.
The face-to-face format will remain intacta as long as the situation allows in Pointe Coupee Parish schools, Superintendent Kim Canezaro said.
Meanwhile, New Roads Mayor Cornell Dukes said Tuesday night that the city has not yet made decisions on whether traditional parades for Christmas and Mardi Gras would roll, but the prospects do not look good right now.
“I’d rather take a “wait and see approach” he told the City Council at its Tuesday night meeting. “Those are big traditions here, but I don’t want to make an immediate decision.
“But it says something when New Orleans has already canceled its parades,” Dukes said. “We don’t want the crowds if they all start flocking here.”
Dukes said he has been speaking with organizers of both The Lions Club and Pointe Coupee Community Center, which sponsor the Fat Tuesday parades.
Much of the decision on the Christmas parade this December will hinge upon the directives issued by the state. Gov. John Bel Edwards was expected to address the rise in cases later this week.
Plans remain intact for the Market on the Mill this weekend, which will require masks for all who attend the event, Dukes said.
“Our country is on a day-to-day situation, but I don’t want to go cancel things too far ahead of time,” he said. “We have to do this on a case-by-case basis and not have a kneejerk reaction to it.
“The COVID numbers are increasing and we’re not ignoring those numbers,” Dukes said. “We want to be safe, but we also want to go ahead with this event and make it a huge success while making it a huge success, as well.”
In the school system, the situation has not yet reached a point in which the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board has considered shuttering schools and shifting to remote learning, Superintendent Kim Canezaro said.
“Our mitigation efforts in the beginning were working, but we’re now seeing an increase in positive cases,” she said. “We’ll have a positive case and then we will do a contract trace and the ones we put on quarantine … many of those aren’t testing positive in the quarantine time.”
A student athlete at Livonia tested positive, and it became a question of who the child had been around. The school system reached out to the Region II epidemiologist, who assisted on a walk-through with contract tracing.
“Given this increase in numbers, we’re told there’s no need to quarantine any grade level out of school,” she said.
Students, teachers and administrators begin a one-week Thanksgiving break after Friday.