First posted at 1:27 p.m. Last updated at 6:45 p.m.
Editor’s Note: A memo went out to staff and families at BLOCKS on Sunday afternoon noting 2 positive cases of COVID at BLOCKS preschool, the district now says there is just one positive case. SOURCE has updated this report at 6:45 p.m. to reflect the change.
FRAMINGHAM – A staff member at the BLOCKS preschool, part of the Framingham Public Schools, has tested positive for COVID-19.
“On Sunday, November 8, the District was notified that two school community members tested positive by DPH. However, after further investigation and consultation with the MA Department of Public Health epidemiologist, it was determined later this afternoon that there is only one positive case in BLOCKS,” said Framingham Assistant Superintendent of Schools Inna London.
“That positive community member was last present on Friday, November 6, and left mid-day because they were deemed a close contact,” said London to SOURCE.
“Our first responsibility is to keep our students and staff safe. We have a comprehensive plan in place to clean the school, inform families whose students were at risk of exposure or in close contact, and support the affected family as they navigate this stressful experience,”wrote the preschool Principal to families on Sunday afternoon, November 8.
“Those who have been deemed close contacts have been notified. A close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of the person for at least 15 cumulative minutes within 24 hours,” wrote Principal Rosie Alvarez.
SOURCE has learned that the “impacted classrooms will be learning remotely effective Monday, November 9 through November 20, with an anticipated return to the classroom on November 23.”
Framingham Public School sent back a couple of hundred students in October with the highest needs to the physical classrooms. That included some students from BLOCKS preschool. Most of the district’s 9,000+ students are attended school virtually.
On November 5, roughly another 300 students returned to the classroom, including more students at BLOCKS preschool.
London said there are 199 students total between the Juniper Hill and Framingham High BLOCKS locations although they are not all in-person. Fifty-four BLOCKS students are remote, said London.
There are 12 students at FHS, 4 of which are remote, said London.
There are 187 BLOCKS students at the Juniper Hill location, 50 of which are remote, said London.
There are 77 staff members at BLOCKS, 75 of which are at Juniper Hill, said London.
“FPS schools are cleaned daily in accordance with our COVID protocol and CDC guidelines; however, in light of this recent information, we are doing a deeper clean of those areas frequented by the community members that tested positive. We will continue to be vigilant in adhering to all of the protocols that have been put in place to reduce the spread of COVID,” said Alvarez.
“We are also providing remote learning for all students required to quarantine at home to continue to provide instruction, structure, and an emotional connection to the classroom during a time that we know will be challenging for those children and families involved,” added the Principal in her email to parents today.
Since some students and staff returned to the classroom in October, there have been a total of 3 positive COVID cases in the public school district, said London Sunday night to the news outlet.