The Manhasset School District has had three individuals test positive for COVID-19 since Oct. 13. These are the first positive tests the school district has had since the school year started. The Manhasset School District is working with the Nassau County Department of Health, who is conducting contact tracing within the school district.
“After learning about this case, our district immediately contacted the Nassau County Department of Health (DOH) who began contact tracing protocols in order to identify anyone who may have been in close contact with this individual,” Manhasset Superintendent Dr. Vincent Butera said in an email to Manhasset School District families after a positive case was announced. “As a point of clarification, once a case is confirmed, the DOH is contacted and directs the district accordingly. We will continue to cooperate fully and in a timely manner. At this time, the DOH has not recommended any large scale quarantine or closure. Any individual who is deemed to be a close contact will be notified directly by the DOH with further guidance.”
Manhasset families were notified on Oct. 13 when a high school student tested positive, Oct. 19 for a Shelter Rock administrator that tested positive and, most recently, Oct. 27 when a Munsey Park Elementary student tested positive.
The school district has not changed any of its guidelines or safety protocols since the positive tests came to light. There is no mandatory testing within the school district, although they have been looking at getting testing throughout the school for staff personnel. Butera told the Manhasset Press that the individuals were not feeling well and had symptoms before deciding to get tests. He also said the health checks in place by the school district did work in finding at least one of these cases.
“Please be reminded that our protocols were designed to mitigate the risk of positive cases and our priority remains the health and safety of our students and staff,” Butera said. “More specifically, the district requires that all students, faculty and staff maintain a social distance of 6 feet or more, maintain proper hand hygiene and wear the appropriate face mask. Furthermore, our staff will continue to conduct daily cleaning of our school building.”
The school district would not share any information regarding how many staff or students are currently under quarantine due to the positive tests.
Other schools districts in Nassau County, including Long Beach School District and Lynbrook School District, have had to fully or partially shut down for an extended period of time because of an increase in COVID-19 positive tests.
The Nassau County Department of Health has the final say on whether a school shuts down, but for now, Butera says people should contact their physician if they are experiencing symptoms such as runny nose, sore throat, cough, difficulty breathing, fever, or loss of taste and smell.