Three Cattaraugus County school districts announced Wednesday afternoon that potential positive COVID-19 cases in the schools have led to several quarantines and potential transitions to virtual instruction.

The Salamanca City Central School District was advised of several required COVID-19 quarantines of staff and students who are awaiting test results as well as multiple positive COVID-19 diagnosis, said Superintendent Robert Breidenstein.

Breidenstein said the district would transition back to 100% virtual instruction for Thursday and Friday as they complete cleaning protocols and contact tracing of potentially exposed students and staff.

Additionally, special education placements will continue to be transported as will students attending BOCES CTE classes in Ellicottville.

“I must stress the importance for everyone to practice proper safety procedures,” Breidenstein said, recommending hand washing, wearing masks and social distancing. “We are dependent on everyone doing their part to keep the virus out of our schools, social circles and homes.”

The Ellicottville Central School District also learned Wednesday that individuals associated with the school have tested positive for COVID-19. Superintendent Robert Miller said these cases only affect students in the middle and high schools.

At this point, Miller said they anticipate the district will be able to continue with its normal schedule Thursday, but if that does change, they will reach out as soon as possible.

The district is working with the county health department on contact tracing efforts, Miller said. Given the timeframe for those cases, the district identified students that are required to quarantine, parents were contacted and the students were dismissed directly from school.

“We would like to thank these parents for their cooperation in these unusual circumstances,” he said. “We are also continuing to make calls to the parents of students that were not in school today who will need to quarantine.”

Miller said calls are being made in addition to calls that the health department will be making with official notification of quarantining requirements. If the health department is unable to reach someone, they will leave a detailed voice message, Miller said, with caller ID showing as "NYS Contact Tracing" or the number 518-387-9993.

Additionally, the Cattaraugus-Little Valley Central School District was informed Thursday that individuals in the high school building tested positive for COVID-19.

Officials said the district will continue with scheduled in-person and remote instruction for the remainder of the week at the elementary, middle and high schools. The county health department will be in contact with individuals that may need to quarantine.

(Contact managing editor Kellen Quigley at kquigleysp@gmail.com)

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