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PUSD: Students, staff quarantined after Pima Elementary worker tested positive for coronavirus

Posted at 6:00 PM, Mar 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-12 18:07:51-04

GRAHAM COUNTY, AZ — The Pima Unified School District says that health officials have asked for students in two different grade levels from Pima Elementary School in Graham County to be quarantined after a staff member tested positive for the coronavirus.

According to the district, the Graham County Health Department is asking that 166 students and five staff members voluntarily remain home, quarantined, until March 25, 2020, unless they are seeking medical care.

A female staff member reportedly went to work while showing at least some symptoms of illness for two days, not realizing she had been exposed. Later, that staff worker found out she had been exposed to the coronavirus by a friend, who was exposed in a different state. The staff member had reportedly worked with fifth and sixth grade students during those two days.

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"We have asked all of the students in the two grade levels that she worked with to quarantine. We quarantined 166 students and 5 staff members," said Sean Rickert, Superintendent of Pima Unified School District. "We know people are nervous. This is something that isn't well understood, it's something that affects children and you know we all feel for children but our primary focus is doing everything we can to preserve the health of our community health care system and make sure people who desperately need medical attention can get medical attention."

Pima Elementary is located in southeastern Arizona near Mount Graham.

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On Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, Pima Unified School District and Graham County Department of Health will have an open testing clinic at Pima Junior High School from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for anybody especially children experiencing mild symptoms.