Gloucester High reports two cases of COVID-19


OWEN HARDY, Staff Writer, Editor

Yesterday, students and staff were notified via email that two members of the GHS community have tested positive for COVID-19. 

 Those who were in “close contact” with someone who tested positive have been contacted by the Department of Health, and told to get tested and  self-quarantine for two weeks.  Close contact is defined as “being within 6 feet of the person for at least 15 consecutive minutes.” 

This news comes as cases in Gloucester and surrounding areas are rising once again. 

Principal James Cook and Superintendent Ben Lummis shared detailed measures to ensure all students and staff are safe, especially as GHS launches the split-day hybrid schedule this week. This schedule sees all students in school Monday-Thursday with one cohort in the morning and the other in the afternoon, alternating depending on day of the week. 

Cook and Lummis noted that having cases in our schools is “expected”.

Our first responsibility is to keep our students and staff safe, so we are making sure families and staff hear directly from the principal and superintendent. It is not unexpected to have positive cases in our schools. We have been planning for this scenario during our reopening planning process, and have already done the following: sanitized the necessary areas in the school building, informed the small number of staff and families whose students were in close contact with the two people who tested positive, and supported the affected people as they navigate this stressful experience.”

Cook urged families to continue to follow guidelines regarding the virus, including staying home if you feel sick or are showing any symptoms, wearing masks in school, practicing social distancing, and contacting the GHS nurses if you are not feeling well. 

Following these guidelines is especially imperative as Gloucester High School enters its first week of hybrid-style learning. 

The email concluded on a positive note, stressing that authorities feel very strongly that students will be safe at school if they follow the rules. 

We continue to be confident that there is no transmission happening within our schools and do not see any evidence that the recent cases are linked in any way. MA DPH further confirmed that the public schools are following appropriate protocols and no further action regarding school closure is necessary at this time.”