Some key points from Davies’ COVID memo

By on October 13, 2021

Dare BOE voted not to allow memo into Oct. 12 meeting

In an Oct. 11 memo to Schools Superintendent John Farrelly, Dare County Department of Health and Human Services Director Dr. Sheila Davies provided an update on the COVID-19 situation in the community and schools for the Dare County Board of Education meeting on Oct. 12.

Citing a conflict, Davies was unable to attend the meeting and submitted the memo via email. Farrelly offered to deliver her presentation, but the Board of Education members — citing her absence from the meeting — voted 4-1 to exclude the health director’s report from the meeting agenda.

In the memo (Sheila Davies Memo), Davies stated that although COVID-19 cases have been declining, Dare County still remains at a level of high community transmission, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The CDC and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, she noted, recommend schools continue with layered mitigation strategies, including universal masking, while counties are experiencing substantial or high levels of community transmission.

Davies also cited the “dramatic decrease in the number of students in quarantine and those with active cases since the implementation of the indoor mask requirement in Dare County Schools.”

Davies, in the memo, also outlined quarantine updates and noted that a Pfizer booster vaccine clinic has been scheduled for Oct. 30 for school personnel who had their second dose of Pfizer at least six months ago and who are interested in receiving a third dose.

Key takeaways from Davies’ report include:

  • The number of new cases of COVID-19 in Dare County have dropped in recent weeks, however the county remains in a level of high community transmission, with a total of 119 new cases from Oct. 4-10 and the percentage of positive COVID tests at 16.97%.
  • As of Oct. 11, there were 9 active student cases of COVID-19 and 16 students in quarantine. On Sept. 3, a day after universal masking was instituted in district schools, there were 93 student cases and 441 students in quarantine.
  • New quarantine guidelines from the state now exempt adults as well as children in the classroom setting from quarantine when masks are worn consistently and appropriately. Additionally, social distancing as a criterion for early return from quarantine is no longer required.
  • With that social distancing requirement no longer mandated, students and staff now have the option, under certain circumstances, to return from quarantine after 7 days or 10 days from last date of exposure, rather than the previous 14 days.
  • The CDC will meet on Oct. 26 to review data presented by Pfizer for COVID-19 vaccinations for children ages 5 to 11, as well as review booster dose data from Moderna.

Click here to read the pdf Sheila Davies Memo.

See Also: Dare Ed Board takes no action on mask mandate





  • Nancy Griffin

    Thanks so much for publishing this information. I note in the memo from Dr. Davies that she offered to be available for questions both before her report would have been presented and by cell phone during the presentation. Too bad that was not satisfactory for the nay-saying board members. Are they really interested in the facts?

    Wednesday, Oct 13 @ 3:47 pm
  • OBX Resident

    The community that my family has grown up in for generations has drastically changed. It shows gleamers every now and then of the caring community of the past, but it is not the community of old. My elders told stories of the German U-Boats in the early 1940’s during WWII attacking merchant vessels off the Outer Banks carrying vital supplies to aid the war in Europe. They told of the loud explosions, fires at sea, and flotsam on the beach. These attacks killed over 5,000 people and strengthened the Nazi forces. The waters off the Outer Banks became known as ‘Torpedo Junction’, the greatest concentration of U-Boat attacks. In August of 1942, the US government issued a ‘black out’ MANDATE. My elders were required to keep house lights off at night, put sheets over the windows, night time activities were severely restricted with commercial business ordered closed, and restrictions on travel. The lighthouses went dark. All this to ensure that the lights on shore would not help the Germans navigate in the darkness. During WWII, Outer Bankers made sacrifices to defeat the Nazi war machine, they complied for the good of the nation. I am glad that the people speaking today at the BOE meetings were not here on the Outer Banks. If so, I can only expect that they would say the ‘black out’ mandate infringed on their constitutional rights. They would argue that it did not serve a purpose, it was causing them anxiety, putting sheets over the windows at night made it hot inside and caused them to pass out, etc. They would argue about freedom of choice and create division within the community. If we had certain reckless board leaders that we have here today ‘carpetbaggers’, they would question all of the facts, reports, and professionals to further insight and divide the community. In closing, this country and community is built on sacrifices. In the 1940’s Outer Bankers made sacrifices that although small helped defeat the Nazi forces. It is unfortunate that the vocal minority represented at the school board meetings is unable to make sacrifices today for the health of our community and schools.

    Wednesday, Oct 13 @ 4:11 pm
  • Thinking About the Future

    Thank you for this reporting.

    “Citing a conflict, Davies was unable to attend the meeting and submitted the memo via email. Farrelly offered to deliver her presentation, but the Board of Education members — citing her absence from the meeting — voted 4-1 to exclude the health director’s report from the meeting agenda.”

    Why in the world would the 4 out of 5 of the BOE want to exclude Sheila Davie’s factual information during this pandemic?

    Wednesday, Oct 13 @ 6:21 pm
  • Sarah

    Thank you for publishing her presentation!

    Wednesday, Oct 13 @ 10:27 pm
  • Michael

    As long as Davies wears masks at golf tournaments she plays in ( like last October) and social distances ( which she didn’t) then I’m good. I’m so tired of hypocrisy with this virus . Muzzle the kids, get whatever money your getting for it, but the rules don’t apply to everyone. It will never end. People say” the virus is here to stay” no the power trips are.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 3:56 am
  • sandflea

    OBX Resident;
    Thanks for the history lesson and the points you make are quite true; unfortunately. It’s just more of the I, Me, My crowd. “I got mine, screw the rest of you”. I am so glad that these selfish, cultish, uneducated people were not the one landing on the beaches of Normandy in 1944.
    Nancy Griffin and Thinking About the Future;
    These people are allergic to facts. If actual facts and data don’t fit into their paradigm, they completely reject them. They always have some sort of slippery excuse or pull up the “What-about” bus. I know for a fact that one of the board members lost their professional license in two states for unprofessional conduct.
    It’s my opinion that these people are against science and data because they couldn’t grasp it a the middle school and/or high school level. I think they’re jealous of others that could grasp things far out of their intellectual capacity. If they can’t have it, they’ll just blow it up so others can’t have it mentality. These folks also cannot admit that they are wrong about something. They’ll allow their own stubborn selves to be taken to the hospital drowning on their own lung fluids rather than concede that they were wrong about something.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 6:36 am
  • French Caldwell

    Since BoE dramatically relaxed the quarantine and social distancing rules, is the reduction in students and staff in quarantine due to masking or due to relaxing the rules?

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 8:36 am
  • Cola Vaughan

    October 11th on the left: September 3rd on the right. 38 days.
    What happened?

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 8:57 am
  • Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice

    Cola, your question is a little cryptic.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 9:24 am
  • Billsnc

    Mark… Think they’re referring to board changing their minds on mask mandate.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 10:13 am
  • Cola Vaughan

    Cryptically facetious. I struggle to communicate.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 1:13 pm
  • Wombatnc

    Oh those pesky facts!
    To the four BOE members who voted against showing the presentation – please tell me what the problem was (in reality) with showing it while having the presenter available via cell phone. Haven’t we all gotten familiar with the use of Zoom conferences and FaceTime over the past year and a half. Bogus excuses from a group of political wannabees appeasing their base.
    Once again, partisan elections for school boards (and judges) should be abolished; otherwise, you get decisions like this one and an unfair judicial system based on campaign/party support.
    @Michael – your accusations about Dr. Davies are pretty sketchy – was she outdoors where transmission rate are pretty much non-existent? I believe you’re one of the people whom “Sandflea” is referring to.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 2:38 pm
  • Grandyguy

    I think Cora hit a GIANT nail squarely on the head.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 6:39 pm
  • Grandyguy


    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 6:39 pm
  • Luminous

    To those who don’t like mask mandates or required Covid vaccines: it’s not about Me. It’s about We.

    You have family members. You have friends. In under *two* years, well over 700,000 Americans… twice as many Americans as died in *four* years of WW2… have died from this virus, many in ICU agony and in denial about the reality of this virus to the end.

    If you are willing to sacrifice yourself in pursuit of personal “freedom”… please stop taking family, friends, first providers, and other essential workers down with you.

    Do what is right, get vaccinated two then three or more times as needed, wear masks indoors in public, and stop fighting sound public health policy. Thank you.

    Thursday, Oct 14 @ 6:47 pm
  • Mike P

    Can any BOE members pass high school science tests? Would they be willing to try?

    Friday, Oct 15 @ 8:01 pm
  • sandflea

    Mike P;
    The BOE members probably couldn’t pass them back when they were in school; and they’re probably still mad about it. Remember way back when we were in school and the people that failed tests or just couldn’t grasp the concepts were also the ones saying: “what a stupid test, nobody will ever use that crap”, or ” the only people that could pass that test are nerds or losers”, etc.
    To answer the second question, the answer is a definite NO.

    Tuesday, Oct 19 @ 7:31 am