JEFFERSON/MARION/FAYETTE COUNTIES, IL — Mt. Vernon Township High School and South Central High School have confirmed individuals at their schools have tested positive for COVID-19.

In a letter from MVTHS officials that confirmed a positive test, they assured parents and guardians the school is working the Jefferson County Health Department to promptly identify and monitor individuals who have had recent contact with the COVID-19 positive individual to prevent further spread within the school and community. They say that at this time, no other individuals have been determined to have been in close contact with this person.

To prevent further spread of the disease, the high school says it is placing staff members and students who are identified as having prolonged close contact to any COVID-19 case(s) in quarantine for 14 days. Close contacts will also receive a separate notification from the Jefferson County Health Department.

Students and staff will continue to be monitored for signs and symptoms of illness and evaluation of illness reports to promptly identify possible outbreaks. The school is also conducting a deep clean and disinfection of the areas impacted by potential exposure to the COVID-19 virus.

South Central School is reporting the high school will go on full remote learning until September 17th after a second confirmed case of COVID-19. The district contacted the Marion County Health Department at 10:22 a.m. Wednesday for confirmation and guidance.

Contact tracing was then conducted in cooperation with the Marion and Fayette county health departments and found 12 students but zero staff members who had close contact with the individual. They are being quarantined for 14 days at the direction of the Marion County Health Department.

This second case in the high school constitutes an “outbreak” by Marion/Fayette County Health Department standards and the Illinois Department of Public Health.

South Central Grade and Middle School will remain open for in-person learning as originally scheduled.

Extra cleaning and sanitizing has been and will continue to be completed on a regimented routine to keep all students and staff healthy and safe.