Officials are warning parents and staff about an outbreak of coronavirus cases at an elementary school in Andover, Massachusetts, but have not canceled classes.
South Elementary School saw an increase in positive COVID-19 cases last week, according to a letter to the community from Principal Brenda Lee on Friday. At least 24 people had tested positive as of Sunday night, a spokesperson said.
"We do anticipate there may be additional positive cases," Lee wrote. "We understand this may cause some concern for our families and staff and we ask you continue to monitor for symptoms."
Individuals who have been identified as close contacts of confirmed positive cases have been notified by the school nurse, Lee wrote in the letter.
"We have spent the weekend collaborating with our school nursing staff and Andover’s Public Health division and the school received a deep clean of all classrooms and common areas over the weekend," a school district spokesperson said. "We will continue to monitor the situation and will provide families and staff with an update on Monday."
The number of positive cases in town doubled in just one week, according to the town health department's latest weekly coronavirus case report. The total number of cases jumped from 27 on Oct. 27 to 61 on Nov. 3, data shows.
"We speak daily with Andover’s Director of Public Health and our superintendent to ensure we are following the proper protocols and the best course of action to keep our school community safe," Lee wrote.
Officials are asking community members to contact the school immediately and take a PCR test if anyone in their home begins to show symptoms. Families are encouraged to monitor their children and keep students who are exhibiting any symptoms home from school.
Staff and families whose students are tested for COVID-19 are also asked to report the results to the school nurse.