Second Positive Case Believed to Be Unrelated to First Case
Board of Health Recommends Continuing with Hybrid Learning Model
MARION — Superintendent Michael S. Nelson, Marion Town Administrator James McGrail and Marion Board of Health Chair Edward Hoffer report that the Old Rochester Regional School District and MA Superintendency Union #55 was informed today of a second positive case of COVID-19 at the Sippican School in Marion. The second case is believed to be unrelated to the positive case that was announced Monday.
An individual at the Sippican School has tested positive for the virus and is self-isolating in accordance with Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocol. The individual has not been in school since Oct. 8 and was tested the following day.The individual’s test results came back today and the school district was immediately notified. Under state and federal health privacy laws, no further information is available about the individual.
Contact tracing is being conducted by the Marion Board of Health and thus far it has been determined that the individual did not have any close contacts that directly impact the school district.
All ORR schools will continue with their normal schedules on Wednesday, Oct. 14, including the Sippican School, at the recommendation of the Marion Board of Health.
“At this time we believe that this second individual had no contact with the previously detected case, and there appears to be no connection or reason to believe they are connected,” Hoffer said. “Mass DPH/DESE guidelines state that if at least a 6-foot distance has been maintained at all times, then there has been no ‘close contact,’ and this was true for the second person identified. At this point, we see no reason to change the hybrid model being used at Sippican School, but will obviously be closely monitoring the situation.”
The school district conducted a deep and thorough sanitization and disinfection of the Sippican School yesterday. All ORR schools will continue to be cleaned everyday after school.
The positive case is the second involving an individual in the school district since schools reopened last month.
“The models we’ve been seeing from state and local health officials indicate that there could be an uptick in COVID-19 cases during the fall and winter months and we will continue to monitor the situation closely,” Superintendent Nelson said. “It is our understanding that the two positive cases within the district are unrelated and both individuals have not been at the school while they’ve been displaying symptoms. Barring any further developments, at this time the Board of Health is not recommending that we make any changes to our current hybrid learning model and we will be following their recommendation.”
Superintendent Nelson and Marion officials continue to urge all families and residents to remain vigilant about social distancing, wearing masks when in public and practicing proper hygiene.
If you or your child are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, such as a fever, chills, respiratory illness, aches or change in taste and smell, please stay home and get a COVID-19 test. Testing can be done either through your primary healthcare provider or at one of the testing sites located throughout the state.
Deep cleaning of all schools will continue to be conducted each night. High touch surfaces are and will continue to be cleaned frequently and as needed throughout the day while the buildings are occupied. Sanitizing wipes remain available in each classroom to wipe down desks when necessary.