WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, N.J. (CBS) – The Washington Township Public School District has announced three positive cases of the coronavirus at two of its schools. In a letter sent to parents on Saturday, the district said two staff members at Hurffville Elementary and one at Washington Township High School tested positive for the virus.
For context, prior to the school year, the teacher’s union publicly complained that the ventilation systems in many of the school district buildings were old and were not up to the CDC standard.
Eyewitness News followed up with Superintendent Joseph Bollendorf who says there’s no evidence the two staff members contracted the virus while inside the building.
Hurffville Elementary School will be closed for the next 14 days and all instruction at Hurffville will continue remotely until Sept. 28.
“We certainly assume and know that some of them are going to test positive and shows that people are being tested and doing what they’re supposed to be doing,” said Dr. Edward Lifshitz of the New Jersey Department of Health.
The district says cleaning and disinfecting of all exposed areas the individuals contacted has been completed.
“The schools are also taking precautions to prevent the introduction and spread of viruses and other germs and are cleaning frequently touched surfaces daily,” the district said. “The ongoing status of this situation continues to be monitored closely. We understand the level of concern regarding COVID-19. We encourage our staff and families to continue following the CDC- promoted safeguards.”
All other district schools will remain open and continue operations per the schedule already in place.
Gov. Phil Murphy addressed a rash of school closures in the Garden State Monday.
“Is this more than we expect? I think it’s about what we expected and I still don’t believe we’re aware of any in-school transmission but if that’s not what the case tells us, please correct the record. And secondly, it feels to me, I’d say quite strongly, that the system is working.”
The teachers union did not respond to our phone calls today and the district did not address questions regarding improvements to the ventilation system.
CBS3’s Dan Koob contributed to this report.