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Colleague says Clay County teacher died due to COVID-19 complications

A 20-year veteran teacher died from what a friend says was COVID-19 complications.

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. — A longtime teacher at Bannerman Learning Center died due to COVID-19, according to a colleague.

“He is a wonderful guy, he was an integral part of our team. He’ll be greatly missed, and I can’t tell you how sorry I am that he’s no longer with us,” one colleague who spoke anonymously with First Coast News said.

The teacher—who we are not naming out of respect for the family’s wishes—died on Friday. the colleague said.

The Clay County School District issued a statement to First Coast News:

“Clay County District Schools is deeply saddened by the passing of a veteran teacher at Bannerman Learning Center. The District extends its sincerest condolences to [his] family, friends, and coworkers. [He] was dedicated to Clay County District Schools working as a teacher for nearly 20 years. He made a difference in the lives of many students during his teaching career.”

This is the second death of a school district employee in two months after a school bus driver died due to COVID-19 complications in October.

According to the school district, only two cases of COVID-19 were reported at Bannerman Learning Center, one student and one teacher.

“Based on the Department of Health’s case interviews and contact tracing of these positive individuals, it was ruled out by the Department of Health that none of them were listed as exposures (secondary transmissions) to each other,” a statement by the district said.

The colleague says they learned on Friday the teacher passed away.

The school district says they are following safety guidelines including social distancing, wearing masks and sanitizing common areas.

The latest numbers, published November 9 say the district has 11 student cases of coronavirus and 10 faculty cases.

It is not clear if the teacher who died was part of those statistics.