After receiving reports of three positive COVID-19 cases last weekend, Klickitat County Health Department announced notification of an additional 14 COVID-19 cases in individuals associated with Goldendale High School last Friday.
More than 60 students and staff were absent from school Friday due to the significant number of close contacts and individuals identified as positive cases, according to school administration officials. Of the individuals testing positive for COVID-19, there does not appear to be any evidence of classroom transmission between students and staff at this time, according to a press release from KCHD.
Students in White Salmon Valley School District have also been impacted by the outbreak. Around 10 students were quarantining last week but were back in school by Friday, Superintendent Jerry Lewis said. They had come into close contact with a Goldendale student who tested positive.
Lewis said on Monday that over the weekend, a student at Henkle Middle School tested positive for the virus in Skamania County, which put 41 students in quarantine due to having close contact.
Lewis said Skamania County had no evidence that the positive case was related to the outbreak at GHS last week.
Middle school girls and boys basketball games have been canceled for the rest of the season, Lewis said.
Starting May 24, GHS will transition to a remote learning for the week of May 24-27 (May 28 is a planned no-school day for the district) in order to minimize further spread of COVID-19 among students and staff. This decision was made in consultation with KCHD out of an “overabundance of caution” to keep students and staff healthy, as well as to minimize any potential impacts to the GHS graduation, scheduled for June 11. Goldendale Middle and Primary Schools will continue with in-person learning.
Both the school district and KCHD are continuing to work to investigate close contacts and possible exposures related to this individual case, said the press release.
Students and staff who have been identified as a close contact or who are a positive case are working with school administration and KCHD staff on when they can safely return to the school setting.
You can help slow the spread of COVID-19 by getting vaccinated, wearing a face mask that covers your nose and mouth if you are unvaccinated when you are in public, washing your hands and staying home when you are sick.
If you are currently experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, contact your primary care provider about getting tested.
COVID-19 symptoms can be different for everyone but generally include some of the following: Fever, chills, headache, muscle aches or pains, sore throat, sinus congestion, dry or productive cough, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain or cramps, loss of smell or taste, and fatigue.
Anyone with symptoms can be tested in Klickitat County by calling to make an appointment at Klickitat Valley Health, Skyline Health, or Northshore Medical Group.