A third COVID-19 case for South Western schools

South Western High School in Penn Township, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. Dawn J. Sagert photo

South Western officials on Tuesday evening reported a third confirmed positive case of COVID-19 in the school district.

Officials just one day prior announced the district would be shutting down for a week after a second case was confirmed, that one at Baresville Elementary. The first was reported at the high school on Aug. 26.

More:South Western closes schools for the week after multiple cases of COVID-19 confirmed

In an emailed letter sent to parents Tuesday evening, officials announced a third case at Park Hills Elementary.

"This confirmed case does not change our plans to reopen for face to face instruction with our approved hybrid A/B schedule on September 8, 2020," Superintendent Jay Burkhart said in the letter.

Schools are currently closed through Friday, with  remote learning resuming on Tuesday. Under the hybrid model, students attend in-person classes three days per week and online classes two days per week.

More:South Western to split students, stagger school days

Burkhart in his letter said officials would again be in contact with the state Department of Health and anyone in the building who might have been exposed — which would mean within 6 feet for at least 15 minutes — and direct them to follow quarantine guidelines.

Officials will continue to monitor students and staff for suspected cases.

In the email with the letter attached, school district officials also noted a change in notification protocol for future cases in the district.

If a case occurs in only one building, only families in that building will be contacted directly with a phone call and email, but all confirmed cases will be posted publicly on the district's coronavirus webpage effective  Sept. 2, the email states.

Any case or cases that cause a schedule change or affect multiple buildings will trigger a district-wide phone call and email, according to the email.