SEVIERVILLE — The number of COVID-19 cases in Sevier County schools stayed relatively stable last week.

After the number of students quarantined reached 872 on Aug. 30, it fell to 587 Sept. 7 and the Board of Education reported 570 students quarantined Monday.

The county school system usually reports system-wide totals at the start of each week.

There were 26 staff members quarantined Monday, according to the board.

The number of active cases, which was at 196 on Aug. 30, was 164 on Monday.

As the numbers spiked at the end of August, Director of Schools Jack Parton encouraged students and staff to wear masks.

The school system doesn’t require masks for either group this year, and Gov. Bill Lee has passed an executive order that would let parents across the state have their children opt out of mandates in schools.

“We are continuing to monitor positive cases and quarantines across the system daily, working closely with the health department to ensure the appropriate application of protocols, and employing the reopening guidelines presented at August’s board meeting to try to slow the spread of COVID where possible,” said Tony Ogle, spokesperson for the school system.

“I appreciate the incredible efforts of staff members across our district and the understanding and patience of parents as we continue into the fall.”

There is not currently a public breakdown of COVID numbers by school.

The state of Tennessee maintained a website last year that broke down COVID-19 figures at individual public schools across the state, but has not updated that site since the new school year began.

The Tennessee Department of Health reported 1,042 active cases of the virus in Sevier County on Thursday, the most recent date included in figures released Monday.

Contact Jeff at jfarrell@themountainpress.com or Twitter at @jeffmtnpress

Contact Jeff at jfarrell@themountainpress.com or Twitter at @jeffmtnpress