SCS parents’ concern mounts as COVID-19 infections continue in schools

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — Students in Shelby County Schools are in their third week of school now, and many parents are concerned about their safety as COVID-19 infections continue in the community.

Parents told FOX13 they want to keep their kids at home and are looking for options outside SCS.

On Monday several parents and grandparents protested outside SCS headquarters for a virtual learning option.

The district currently does not have a plan to offer virtual learning.

An online petition recently began for parents who want a virtual learning option.

The petition currently has over 12,000 signatures.

RELATED: Parents protest outside SCS headquarters for the option of virtual learning

Some parents said their students have serious underlying health issues, including asthma.

A 16-year-old Westwood High School student died over the weekend from complications due to COVID-19, his family said.

Another parent said the student’s death made him too uncomfortable to send his son to school.

Jemarquis Westbrook’s son is a senior at Southwind High.

“I feel like my kids need to be with me doing what I feel like we need to be doing to make it through this pandemic,” Westbrook said.

Westbrook said he’s looking into options that will allow his son to learn from home.

“You go to school and die, don’t care about no diploma then,” he said. “So I’m going to find another option.”

In order for SCS students to be accepted into virtual learning in other districts they must have at least a 2.8 GPA.

Westbrook said his son fell shy of the requirement to make him eligible.

MORE: SCS high school student dies from COVID-19 complications, family says

According to the latest data released from SCS, over 250 students have tested positive for the virus.

Many staff members have also tested positive, and two teachers recently died from the virus, according to their families.

Coronavirus: What are the symptoms of the delta variant in children?

Tune in to FOX13′s Good Morning Memphis for more from local parents as the COVID crisis continues.