School staff are shutting down a primary school in Auburn for the rest of the week following an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases among students and staff.
Calvert Elementary School closed Thursday and will not reopen until Monday after a “fairly large number” of cases were identified across all grade levels, Superintendent David Patton said.
Officials from the Southeast District Health Department and the Auburn School District declined to say how many positive cases were identified due to privacy concerns. There are 466 students enrolled in the school for kindergarten through fifth-grade students in Auburn, who have a population of about 3,300.
Masks were not required by students or staff in the Auburn district since school began Aug. 13, but will be required going forward at Calvert until conditions change, Patton added. The school will also undergo a thorough cleaning.
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The Auburn Board of Education has convened an emergency meeting for Monday to “discuss and possibly take steps toward COVID protocols.”
The cluster of cases at Calvert Elementary forced students and teachers identified as close contacts in quarantine and raised concerns for staff.
School officials are not aware of any admissions in connection with the outbreak.
Patton said it is unclear how the outbreak started, but said a case of an adult was identified at the school Monday. Then, on Tuesday, a few more cases sprouted up, among among students. By Wednesday, “it was a flood gate,” Patton said.
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