Staff member at middle school in Princeton tests positive for COVID-19

A staff member at the middle school in Princeton has tested positive for COVID-19, school district officials said on Wednesday evening.

Officials said the local health department has been in touch with anyone who may have had prolonged contact with the staff member. The middle school has been under construction, and officials said because of that, there have been few staff members in the building. No students have been in the building. The staff member will continue to be monitored and will self-quarantine for at least 14 days, officials said.

A contractor doing work at the middle school also tested positive for COVID-19, but school officials said the health department officials believe the case is unrelated. The local health officer has already contacted anyone who might have had prolonged contact with the contractor, officials said. 

“From what I have been told by the Princeton Health Department, these were two isolated incidents,” said Interim Superintendent Barry Galasso. “It is my understanding that our employee did not contract COVID from the contractor. We will not have any personnel working in that building until Tuesday, and we are doing everything that has been recommended by the health authorities.”

Galasso said he did not anticipate any changes to the schedule at the middle school. Teachers have been doing professional development training remotely in preparation for the district schools opening virtually on Sept. 14. The district plans to offer hybrid learning beginning on Oct. 12.

District staff members who have been in the buildings are required to wear masks and face coverings at all times, and must also observe physical distancing and hand-washing protocols, officials said.