ASHTABULA — The Ashtabula City Health Department has notified the Ashtabula Area City school officials that an employee tested positive for COVID-19.

The employee was not in direct, close or prolonged contact with any students since March 13. This means the 14-day quarantine period expired last Friday and no other district employees or students have shown symptoms, Superintendent Mark Potts said.

“The district takes all health and safety matters seriously and is working closely with local health officials,” he said.

Potts said the employee who has the coronavirus has not been involved in the preparation of the district’s free school lunches being distributed at both school campuses, as well as sites throughout the district.

Any employee who may have been in contact with the affected employee has been identified and contacted by the school district administration and advised to self-quarantine and monitor any COVID-19 symptoms.

Anyone with symptoms, such as a  fever, cough or trouble breathing, should contact their primary care doctor immediately, said Christine Hill, Ashtabula City Health Commissioner.

Potts said the district is taking all the required precautions, which include:

• Proper hand washing;

• Requiring employees who are ill to stay home;

• Employee temperature monitoring;

• Cleaning and sanitizing all areas of all school buildings;

• Requiring employees ages 65 and older and have serious health conditions to stay home, and

• Requiring social distancing.

On March 13, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine issued an order closing the state’s K-12 schools for a three week period due to concerns regarding the coronavirus.

On Monday, as the third of those three weeks began, DeWine extended the state’s school closures until at least May 1. DeWine said he will reevaluate whether to reopen schools as May 1 approaches.

For questions regarding the coronavirus, call the Ohio Department of Health at 1-833-427-5634.

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