PRINCETON — Students returned to their classrooms Monday in Mercer County as local COVID-19 numbers continued to increase and quarantines were taking place at Princeton High School after a positive case there.
After a student tested positive for COVID-19 at the school, others have now been quarantined as a precaution.
Brenda Donithan, administrator of the Mercer County Health Department, said it’s not an outbreak, only one case at this point.
“We have only one student that tested positive,” Donithan said.
Those who had been in contact with the student will remain in quarantine until they are tested and have a negative result, she added.
“This (quarantines) is a precaution,” she said.
There have been four confirmed COVID-19 exposures associated with Mercer County Schools to date, including earlier exposures on Aug. 27 at Bluefield Middle School and on Sept. 4 at Princeton Senior High School. The most recent case was confirmed Saturday and related to the Princeton High quarantines.
According to a statement released by the Mercer County Board of Education, a positive COVID-19 case was confirmed Saturday at Princeton High School. The statement said students and staff known to be exposed have been quarantined and contact tracing is underway by the Mercer County Health Department. The statement added that deep cleaning and disinfecting of all affected areas will be completed.
A school employee in Mercer County also recently died as a result of COVID-19, but that employee didn’t live in West Virginia and thus isn’t being counted as a Mercer County death.
This is the first day back in school for Mercer County students since the county moved from the orange color code into yellow on the state County Alert System.
As of Monday morning, Mercer County was still in the code yellow category with the state’s color-coded school re-entry metric system.
The county’s cumulative total of coronavirus cases to date had climbed to 380. That’s up from 373 cases on Sunday.
In all, Mercer County has reported 24 virus deaths to date, all from the Princeton Health Care Center.
— Contact Charles Boothe at email@example.com