Central HS reports COVID-19 positive; positive student and close contacts to quarantine

A Central High School student has tested positive for COVID-19, the school administration announced Thursday afternoon.

School will not be closed, but the student and close contacts will be quarantined.

From a Central news release:

One student at Central High School of Westosha tested positive for COVID-19, the Central High School of Westosha School District and the Kenosha County Division of Health announced jointly today.

This is the first confirmed case of the virus within Central High School since students returned to in-person and virtual learning on September 1, 2020.

The individual that tested positive attended school on Monday and Tuesday, but showed no symptoms of being sick.

This individual is now in isolation for 10 days, per Wisconsin Department of Health Services and Kenosha County Division of Health recommendations.

The Kenosha County Division of Health is working with the school to identify and notify close contacts of this individual. These contacts will also be required to quarantine for 14 days from the last date of exposure. Close contacts include those who: Had direct physical contact with the infected individual; were within six feet of the COVID-19-positive individual for more than 15 minutes; had contact with respiratory secretions from the infected individual (e.g. were coughed/sneezed on, had contact with dirty tissue, or shared a drinking glass, food or towels or other personal items).

Those who do not receive a phone call from the Division of Health or a close contact letter from Central High School were likely not in contact with the COVID-19-positive individual and are therefore not considered to be in a higher-risk group for exposure.

John Gendron, district administrator, said, “We are working closely with our local health department to ensure impacted students quarantine as needed for the safety and well-being of all. This important safety measure is in place to prevent further spread of infection by those who were in close contact with the COVID-19-positive individual.” He further added, “The district worked hard this summer to create safeguards to minimize the number of students identified as close contacts. Students that are required to quarantine will switch to virtual learning with minimal disruption to their learning.”

“It’s important to remember that COVID-19 cannot be transmitted by simply passing an infected person in the hallway,” said Kenosha County Health Director Dr. Jen Freiheit. “That’s not a close contact. Only those close contacts within classrooms or elsewhere will receive a close-contact quarantine letter.”

Parents are urged to monitor their students and other family members for any COVID-19 symptoms, including fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell, fatigue, headaches, etc. Those who do become symptomatic should call their health care provider.

Freiheit said parents should not send students to school even with minor symptoms such as a persistent headache, runny nose or cough. In this case and others, those who find out they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus should call their health care provider and seek testing.

A frequently updated list of testing sites in and around Kenosha County is available online at https://www.kenoshacounty.org/2058/COVID-19-Testing-Locations. More information about the virus, including local data and links to resources, is available on the Kenosha County COVID-19 Response Hub
website, at https://www.kenoshacounty.org/covid-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 safety in school, visit
https://kenosha-county-covid-19-response-kenoshacounty.hub.arcgis.com/ Or call us at 262-605-6700.


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