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Seneca Valley closing school due to outbreak; remote learning slated

October 29, 2020 Digital Media Exclusive

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Seneca Valley School District will close one of its middle schools for two weeks as a result of a COVID-19 outbreak.

The district announced Wednesday that Ryan Gloyer Middle School students will learn remotely through Nov. 10 after five students and staff members there have tested positive for COVID-19, comprising almost half of the district's cases.

Additional cases at the school may be forthcoming, the district said in a letter to parents Wednesday afternoon.

At this time, Seneca Valley will open RGMS back for in-person instruction on Nov. 11. Only the middle school is affected by the closure, and neither the intermediate nor senior high schools will be closing. Three teachers and two students at RGMS have tested positive for the illness caused by the coronavirus, according to the district.

Seneca Valley initially announced Wednesday that the middle school would be closed that day after learning of “additional” cases of coronavirus Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. In a communication sent to parents Tuesday, the district informed them of one student who tested positive Monday after having last been in the building Friday.

Unlike in other cases in which the district has explicitly stated that the positive individual did not display symptoms or declared they believed the person contracted the illness outside of the district, the communication sent to parents Tuesday did neither. However, it stated that the individual “was not in close contact with any staff member.”

On Monday, the district announced that a special/elective teacher at Ryan Gloyer had tested positive the day prior, but asserted the teacher had “no close contact with students.”

Seneca Valley currently has 12 active cases of COVID-19 among staff and students at four schools, including RGMS, the Intermediate High School, Rowan Elementary School and the cyber Academy of Choice.

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Alex J. Weidenhof

Alex J. Weidenhof