Williston schools closed Monday over possible COVID-19 exposure

Coronavirus

A rendering of coronavirus via the CDC.

Classes were canceled Monday at two Williston schools after officials learned a staff member stayed at an out-of-state hotel where “mulitple cases” of COVID-19 were confirmed.

In a letter to parents of children at Central School and Allen Brook School, the Champlain Valley School District said the staff member traveled over February break and “multiple positive COVID-19 cases were confirmed with guests who stayed at the same hotel.”

The staff member is following Centers for Disease Control guidelines and has self-quarantined at home after showing cold-like symptoms. However, the letter said there is no confirmation that the symptoms are connected to the outbreak that has infected more than 100,000 people worldwide, including about 550 in the U.S.

Vermont health officials reported the state’s first presumptive case of the virus late Saturday. That person is quarantined at a Bennington hospital. New Hampshire reports at least four cases, while in New York, there are at least 106 confirmed cases.

Champlain Valley district officials said they will “fully and completely disinfect” the schools as a preventive measure” and work with the Vermont Department of Health about next steps.

“We all understand that we have a social responsibility to each other in situations like this as we are one community,” the district said. “Here in our district, we take this responsibility seriously.

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