West Middle School testing students and staff due to COVID-19 outbreak

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — All students and staff at West Middle School were required to be tested for COVID-19 on Friday due to an outbreak of coronavirus.

According to the school, the Winnebago County Health Department notified administrators Thursday that three individuals had tested positive for coronavirus. The Illinois Department of Public Health classifies an “outbreak” as “three or more epidemiologically linked cases tied to a single exposure source.” 

“We are requiring the test as a precaution. COVID-19 transmission is not happening among students at West from in-person learning, based on information from the Winnebago County Health Department. Our goal is to ensure students remain safe and healthy, and we want to limit any potential COVID-19 exposure or spread,” the school said in a statement.

According to the school, students who are absent on Friday will be required to test when they return, or bring proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken between today and Monday, Nov. 8. Students who do not participate in any kind of COVID-19 test may be required to quarantine through Sunday, Nov. 14, and can return on Monday, Nov. 15.

“When I was in there was probably a hand full of kids in the, or parents in the there also with their kids. They’re not happy about it, there was no permission given,” said Ashleigh Starks, parent of a West Middle School student. “I mean, if they’re not asking for permission to do a simple COVID test, what else are they gonna, eventually end up doing. Are they going to try to vaccinate the kids without permission?”

If students fail to comply, they could be held out of classes until November 6.

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