HAVERHILL — Superintendent Maureen Lynch reports that a student at Whittier Tech has tested positive for COVID-19.
Whittier Tech was informed today of a positive COVID-19 case within the district. The student, a Haverhill resident, has not been in the building since Thursday morning and will continue to isolate at home until cleared by the Haverhill Department of Public Health.
The district is following its comprehensive internal plan for a positive case, which has included cleaning and disinfecting the areas where the student was, supporting the affected family and working closely with local public health officials. The District is following all state Department of Public Health and Haverhill Department of Public Health protocols.
Additionally, high touch areas in the school continue to be disinfected multiple times per school day and the facility is cleaned thoroughly each day after school.
Whittier Tech has cooperated with the Haverhill Department of Public Health to determine there are no close contacts at Whittier Tech. Close contacts are defined as anyone who was within six feet of an infected individual for 15 consecutive minutes or more. Per district protocols for in-person learning, no student in the school district is within 6 feet of another student or staff member during classroom instruction.
This has been determined to be an isolated incident and Whittier Tech will continue to pursue its hybrid learning model.
“Fortunately, no close contacts have been identified at Whittier Tech, and we wish this student well as they recover,” Superintendent Lynch said. “We believe this was an isolated incident, but also are reminding students and staff to continue doing everything they can to stay healthy– wear a mask, wash your hands frequently, and practice social distancing from people outside your household.”
Whittier Tech will continue to be vigilant in adhering to all of the protocols that have been put in place in an effort to continue in-person learning. The district also provides remote learning for the students required to isolate or quarantine at home in order to continue to provide instruction as well as to maintain an emotional connection between students and their classroom.
In addition, to prevent further spread of the disease in the community, Whittier Tech asks that students, families and staff take the following precautions to prevent the spread of the disease:
- Stay home if you have a fever or are not feeling well. Students should stay home from school should any new or unexplained illness, no matter how mild, develop. This precaution is meant to keep all staff and students safe.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid close contact with others. When outside your home, please adhere to social distancing guidelines and keep a distance of at least 6 feet between yourself and others.
- Wear a cloth face covering that covers your mouth and nose to protect others when in public areas.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
Students and their families are urged to remain home when sick, and students or staff that develop COVID-19 symptoms at school will be separated from others in a designated “isolation area” and be assessed by the school nurse before being either sent home or to a healthcare facility if necessary. Areas where a student or staff member develops symptoms will be closed off until they are cleaned and disinfected.