Shelton schools report 58 positive COVID cases in November

Exterior, Shelton Intermediate School, in Shelton, Conn. Aug. 9, 2016.

Exterior, Shelton Intermediate School, in Shelton, Conn. Aug. 9, 2016.

SHELTON — Ten more school community members — covering five different schools — have tested positive for COVID-19, according to Interim Superintendent Beth Smith.

Smith reported the additional positive tests on Wednesday. In all, 78 individuals in the school community tested positive since school reopened in September, with 58 of those cases coming this month alone.

According to Smith, four people at Shelton High, two each at Perry Hill and Shelton Intermediate schools, and one each at Long Hill and Mohegan schools were reported to have tested positive in the latest statement to parents and staff.

The recent spike in cases — and massive numbers of quarantined staffers — forced the district to send all students to remote instruction on Nov. 11. Students will stay on distance learning until at least Jan. 1, she announced.

“As the number of positive cases continue, we believe we have begun to see spread of COVID-19 among staff members,” Smith said. “This has led to increased staff on isolation and in quarantine.”

Smith said that, because there are staff members who work in close proximity with each other and tested positive, even when following mitigation strategies, “we believe there may have been spread in the schools.”

“It is a reminder,” Smith added, “how rapidly this virus can spread and a reminder to ensure proper hand hygiene, a minimum of 6 feet of social distancing and wearing a mask over the nose and mouth at all times.”