Note: This story was updated at 5:45 p.m.
An instructor at the Oak Ridge High School band camp has tested positive for COVID-19, Superintendent Bruce Borchers said in a letter to parents on Wednesday.
The band camp instructor, who worked with multiple students and staff members, had no symptoms before learning of the positive test result Wednesday morning, Borchers said.
The instructor, who isn’t being publicly identified, was immediately separated from the band camp and told to contact the appropriate county health department to report the diagnosis and ask for guidance, Borchers said.
Borchers said band camp was suspended Wednesday morning. All participants, both students and staff, were notified of possible COVID-19 exposure, regardless of how close they were to the instructor, and advised to contact either their physician or the appropriate county health department for guidance.
Those who were close to the instructor have been contacted individually to inquire about who else they may have had recent contact with and to identify the specific areas in the high school that they have visited while attending the camp. Most of the camp activities were held in the ORHS Performing Arts Wing and outdoors, and participants have worn masks whenever possible during the camp, Borchers said.
The superintendent said all areas of the high school that could be infected have been closed and will remain so for two to five days, at a minimum, while they are cleaned. Nobody can enter the areas except for designated cleaning personnel, Borchers said.
“No area will be re-opened until the Oak Ridge Schools administrative staff has re-evaluated these circumstances with the guidance of the school system’s newly formed Communicable Disease Team, which is composed of leaders from the Oak Ridge Schools and the appropriate county health department,” Borchers said.
The superintendent said the school system is following protocols. They include:
- Confirming cases with the appropriate county health department.
- Quickly communicating information about possible COVID-19 exposures to any people and families who are potentially affected, as well as to the broader school and Oak Ridge communities.
- Protecting the identity of the people involved.
“It is our hope that you and loved ones are and will remain healthy and safe while we all continue to address the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Borchers said.