Ichabod Crane reports 3 new COVID-19 cases

The Ichabod Crane Central School District has reported three new cases of COVID-19. File photo

VALATIE — The Ichabod Crane Central School District has three new positive COVID-19 cases, district officials said Thursday.

The district reported one middle-school student and two high-school students have tested positive for COVID-19.

“I know I speak on behalf of the entire district when I say we are all thinking of the members of our school community who have tested positive or have been exposed and we are hoping for a healthy, speedy and safe return to school,” District Superintendent Suzanne Guntlow said in a statement.

The three new positive cases are students who had been in close proximity with the positive case at the primary school that was reported Sunday, according to a letter sent to district families Thursday.

All staff and students who had been in close contact with any of the positive cases in the district have been notified and are required to quarantine for the mandatory two weeks.

There were 25 staff members at the high school who have to be in quarantine, none of whom have shown any symptoms of COVID-19, according to the district letter. The high school will remain fully remote until Nov. 9.

“With this level of impact to the high-school staffing, we are unable to reopen the building until the mandatory quarantine period has ended,” Guntlow said in a statement. “Thus, we look forward to reopening our doors for our group A high school students on Nov. 9.”

Middle-school students returned to in-person classes Friday after going remote earlier this week in relation to the primary school positive case.

Primary-school students will continue to have in-person classes.

The positive case announced Sunday at the primary school was the district’s first case. Out of an abundance of caution, the entire district had a remote learning day Monday while the district and Columbia County Health Department conducted contact tracing and notified anyone who should quarantine.

Earlier this week, the Germantown Central School district reported two elementary-school students who had tested positive for COVID-19. Those students had not been at school since Oct. 16, and the district was able to remain open as usual.

More than 260 people in the county are in mandatory quarantine, according to the county Department of Health. This is the highest number in quarantine since the beginning of the pandemic.

The Taconic Hills Central School District reported a positive case in a high-school student. The student had not been in school since Oct. 21. In the district, 75 students and 10 staff members were identified as having been in close proximity with the positive student and told to quarantine.

Chatham, New Lebanon and Hudson City school districts have not reported any positive COVID cases in students attending classes.

Countywide, there has been a recent uptick in the number of positive COVID cases. In all, Columbia County has had 689 positive cases, with 75 of those active. This is the highest number of active cases in the county since June, according to the Health Department. There are 21 people in the county hospitalized with COVID, with two in the intensive care unit. There have been 41 COVID-related deaths in the county since the beginning of the pandemic.

An outbreak at Ghent Assisted Living this month included 45 residents and 11 staff members who have tested positive. The four most recent COVID-related deaths in the county have been residents of the facility.

The Columbia County Department of Health will be holding three upcoming COVID testing clinics at the former John L. Edwards Primary School in Hudson. They will be held Nov. 10, Nov. 17 and Dec. 1 from 9-11 a.m. Preregistration is not required for the clinics. Anyone who wants to be tested must bring a photo ID and masks are required for entry. Each clinic is limited to 100 people.

The Department of Health is encouraging anyone who has symptoms such as a dry cough, fever, shortness of breath or loss of sense of taste or smell to get tested for COVID-19.

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