Positive COVID-19 test announced by Ridgefield Public Schools

Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva

Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva

Contributed photo / Hearst Connecticut Media

Someone in the Ridgefield Public Schools community has tested positive for COVID-19, but school authorities say the person was determined not to have been in a school when contagious, so building closures and contact tracing aren’t necessary.

Those decisions were made in consultation with town Director of Health Ed Briggs and school system medical adviser Dr. James Ahern, according to Superintendent of Schools Susie Da Silva.

News of the positive test was announced in an email sent out by Superintendent Da Silva Monday afternoon, Oct. 5, forwarding a communication from Aaron Crook, the school system’s head of nursing and COVID-19 Health and Safety Compliance Liaison.

“Good afternoon, Please see attached COVID-19 communication from Aaron Crook, COVID 19 Health and Safety Compliance Liaison and Coordinator of Nursing Services,” Da Silva said.

The communication from Crook said:

“Dear RPS Parents, Guardians, Teachers, and Staff, The RPS reopening plan calls for notifying the entire RPS community when there is a confirmed case of COVID-19. In keeping with our plan, this message is to notify you that a member of our school community has tested positive for COVID-19.

“After reviewing the exposure, symptom and testing history in consultation with Mr. Ed Briggs, Town of Ridgefield Health Department Director, and Dr. James Ahern RPS medical advisor, it has been determined that the individual was not infectious during the time they were in the school building,” Crook said.

“No contact tracing or building closures are necessary at this time. We are grateful for the community's vigilance and adherence to mitigation strategies that keep all of us safe.”

Superintendent Da Silva responded to an email from Hearst Connecticut Media, seeking specifics such as the school or schools involved, the timing of the incident, and whether the person who tested positive was a staff member, student or parent.

“The reason that we did not share the location in this particular case, was that in consultation with our local health experts, Ed Briggs and Dr. Ahern, no action (exposure/risk) was needed for our students or families,” Da Silva said.

“We shared because we did outline in our plan that we would — and never stipulated the circumstances, and wanted to be transparent,” Da Silva said.

“There was no public health reason to identify the school, as the person was not infectious while in a school building, according to CDC guidelines.”