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Attleboro High School Student with Coronavirus Attends Class

NBC Boston logo NBC Boston 4 days ago Mary Markos
BOSTON, MA – MARCH 18: The contents of a COVID-19 collection kit for testing including viral transport media (bottom) and a swab in the MGH Microbiology Lab are seen at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on March 18, 2020. The hospital plans to double its 150 intensive care beds. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images) © Boston Globe via Getty Images

BOSTON, MA – MARCH 18: The contents of a COVID-19 collection kit for testing including viral transport media (bottom) and a swab in the MGH Microbiology Lab are seen at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on March 18, 2020. The hospital plans to double its 150 intensive care beds. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Students at Attleboro High School were exposed to coronavirus after a classmate who tested positive went to school Monday, according to the district's superintendent.

Anyone who came in close contact with the student was told to undergo a two-week quarantine, according to a letter sent out by Superintendent David Sawyer. School nurses conducted contract tracing to identify those at risk and notified families.

Parents were not contacted if their children were not impacted by the event, Sawyer noted, which includes students at other schools. 

"I understand that this inevitable moment is stressful for many. However, it shouldn’t change anything," Sawyer wrote.

Measures like contact tracing and daily screenings help reduce this threat, Sawyer went on, but those safety precautions are "ultimately designed to prevent the spread of the virus under these precise circumstances."

"The guidance from the state cannot ensure a virus-free environment, especially considering we know that some carriers are asymptomatic," Sawyer said. "We will have to wait for the end of the quarantines to be certain we were successful, but there is no reason at this moment to assume differently."

The district wasn't notified of the test result until Tuesday, according to Sawyer, rendering officials unable to prevent the resulting exposure. 

"This unacceptable outcome was caused by delays in the reporting timeline, not a breakdown in our safety protocols," Sawyer wrote.

The school district will continue to monitor coronavirus data and "act accordingly at both the school and district levels."

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