Littleton school closes after COVID forces a third of staff, 100 students into quarantine

Heritage High School in Littleton will close after more than two dozen staff members and 100 students were forced to quarantine because of possible exposure to COVID-19.

Diane Leiker, chief communications officer for Littleton Public Schools, confirmed that the district was made aware Tuesday and Wednesday of one student and one staff member who tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Those two cases sent a combined 127 people, including about a third of school staff, into quarantine this week, according to letters sent to Heritage High families.

“Because there are now a total of 27 staff members — about one third of the entire Heritage High School staff — who must quarantine for 14 days, we do not have enough staff in the school to provide adequate supervision and safety for our students,” said principal Stacey Riendeau in the Sept. 2 letter to families.

Heritage High School will be closed Friday through Sept. 11, during which students and staff will participate in remote learning, Leiker said. The school is expected to reopen on Sept. 14, when the quarantined students and staff may return.

Heritage joins a growing list of schools dealing with cases of COVID-19. Fort Lupton High School in Weld County also shut down and transitioned all 480 of its students to remote learning through Sept. 8 after two positive cases popped up.

On Wednesday, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported three new outbreaks in schools. The agency defines an outbreak as when multiple students or students and staff test positive after spending time together in class and it seems likely the virus spread in the school. Heritage High School is not considered to have an outbreak.

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