High school closes temporarily after two confirmed cases

File photo by Tristan Lorei.

By Randi B. Hagi, assistant editor

Michael Richards, superintendent of the Harrisonburg City Public Schools, told The Citizen on Thursday that he would be closing Harrisonburg High School on Friday to allow the health department to conduct contact tracing. The decision comes after two staff members tested positive for COVID-19.

Richards said the closure could just last for the day, depending on the results of that contact tracing.

Only about 10% of city students are actually in the school buildings, as the division moved the fall semester online for almost all kids. Those few who have been attending school in person are either English language learners or have special education needs, and their families agreed to have them physically in school.

Harrisonburg High School is the second of the division’s buildings to temporarily close due to the virus. Spotswood Elementary School closed for a week this month after one employee tested positive, and two others had to be tested. It reopened on Monday, and “everything is going well there since,” Richards told The Citizen.

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