MVHS closes to protect students, faculty after potential coronavirus case reported

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School will be closed to students of Murrieta Valley High School beginning, Monday, March 9, after an employee there fell ill and was being tested for coronavirus. Valley News/Courtesy photo

Murrieta Valley High School will be closed beginning Monday out of “an abundance of caution” after an employee, who traveled to a country with a known coronavirus outbreak, fell ill and was being tested for the illness, also known as COVID-19.

Murrieta Valley High School will be closed Monday, March 9, and will remain closed until testing of the affected individual is complete, Brooke Frederico, a spokeswoman for Riverside University Health System, said in a joint news release with Murrieta Valley Unified School District.

Nearly 6 dozen students were instructed to self-quarantine after possibly coming into contact with the unidentified employee.

“The health and safety of our students is our first concern. This decision was made is to ensure their health,” said Murrieta Valley Unified School District Superintendent Pat Kelley.

Public Health officials issued the exclusion orders to the 71 students. The action was taken to prevent students and school personnel from becoming sick.

“While I want to reassure the students, families and staff at MVHS that the risk of transmission is low, I support the school district’s decision to temporarily close the school until testing is complete,” said Dr. Cameron Kaiser, Riverside County public health officer.

During the closure, the campus will be disinfected.

Coronavirus is generally transmitted through close contact with a sick person. The virus can be spread on surfaces through coughs and sneezes. It’s critical that anyone who is sick, stays home. Public health officials urge the community to cover coughs and sneezes, wash hands frequently and keep a distance from others who are sick.

For more information, visit www.rivcoph.org/coronavirus.

MVHS parents can call Murrieta Valley USD at (951) 304-1795 between 10 a.m. and noon Saturday or send an email to mvusdinfo@mvusd.org.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated as more information becomes available.