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How Vermont schools are handling the omicron surge amid changes to testing, tracing guidelines

A red stop sign with lights on the side of a yellow school bus.
Vermont schools have struggled as the omicron variant of COVID-19 surges in the state. This hour, we hear how schools are dealing with the challenges, and planning for changes to how schools test for the virus and trace cases.

Live call-in discussion: The omicron variant of COVID-19 spread rapidly through Vermont last week, stressing students, teachers and staff returning to school. Now the Agency of Education’s announcement on Friday that schools should stop contact tracing and PCR surveillance testing has sent a shock wave through school communities across Vermont. This hour, an education reporter details the challenges schools are facing, and two superintendents discuss how unprecedented COVID case numbers are affecting their districts.

Our guests are:

Broadcast live on Monday, Jan. 10, 2022 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message or tweet us @vermontedition.

Connor Cyrus joined Vermont Public as host and senior producer in March 2021. He was a morning reporter at WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island. A graduate of Lyndon State College (now Northern Vermont University), he started his reporting career as an intern at WPTZ, later working for WAGM in Presque Isle, Maine, and WCAX Channel 3, where he covered a broad range of stories from Vermont’s dairy industry to the nurses’ strikes at UVM Medical Center. He’s passionate about journalism’s ability to shed light on complex or difficult topics, as well as giving voice to underrepresented communities.
Mikaela Lefrak joined Vermont Public in 2021 as co-host and senior producer of Vermont Edition. Her stories have aired nationally on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, Marketplace, The World and Here & Now. A seasoned local reporter, Mikaela has won two regional Edward R. Murrow awards and a Public Media Journalists Association award for her work.
Originally from Delaware, Matt moved to Alaska in 2010 for his first job in radio. He spent five years working as a radio and television reporter, radio producer, talk show host, and news director. His reporting received awards from the Alaska Press Club and the Alaska Broadcasters Association. Relocating to southwest Florida, he was a producer for television news and NPR member station WGCU for their daily radio show, Gulf Coast Live. He joined Vermont Public in October 2017 as producer of Vermont Edition.