COVID Cases Increase After Prom

Katie Notch, Staff Writer

After a night filled with hundreds of kids, a beautiful venue, and masquerade masks at this year’s prom on April 23, the school has seen a jump in COVID-19 cases in the last week.  

Principal Ashley Agans said that the spike in reports and exposures was due to the super-spreader event more than anything else.  

“I don’t think it was because of prom, I know it was because of prom,” she said. 

Agans said the trends in climbing numbers “started with the junior class,” and has now been spread to all grade levels.  

“When you have 700 kids in an enclosed ballroom, it’s bound to happen,” she said. 

In the past week, the school has been receiving seven to 10 cases daily, and to no surprise, Alpharetta High School, who had its prom on the same night at the same place, has also seen similar patterns in more COVID cases. 

“I’ve talked to Alpharetta and Milton, and the exact same thing has happened to them,” said Agans. “This just couldn’t have been caused by anything else.” 

Science teacher Gretchen Martin closely follows daily case numbers and updates.  

“Throughout my six classes, about eight students have it and a few more have been exposed,” she said.  

Matching the timeline, Martin had only started seeing this surge over the past two weeks.  

“Even I feel a bit sick, so I’m planning on staying home tomorrow,” said Martin.  

With new cases, there has also been speculation among parents and students, specifically seniors, if this incline would affect graduation.  

Assistant Principal Darius Maize said he is not sure what will happen, but it is out of the hands of the school. 

“That decision is not administrated by [the school]; it is the CDC and the Board of Education’s problem,” he said. 

Although masks were distributed alongside the cap and gowns, they are optional for graduating seniors at the ceremony.  

“I mean, they were ordered months in advance, so they would have been included anyways,” he said.  

It is unclear whether this sudden elevation in numbers will affect the graduation ceremony, but as of now, masks are still optional.