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Two positive cases put 100 into quarantine at UHS

MORGANTOWN — Two equals 100 (plus) at University High School.

At least it did Friday.

Which is why the COVID disinfecting crew of Monongalia County’s school district will likely put in a lot of steps up and down those long hallways at UHS Saturday.

That’s because two positive cases among students at the sprawling school on Bakers Ridge put an additional 100 classmates, plus one teacher, into quarantine, Superintendent Eddie Campbell Jr. said.

The crew will take on the building for a thorough cleaning and disinfecting.

“Well, this is pretty big,” he said of the quarantining, in particular.

“And we are always going to go for safety, for our students and our employees.”

Eighty-nine students were sent home Friday when a student tested positive after taking part in a physical education class, the superintendent said.

They made up the rolls of three P.E. classes, Campbell said.

The classes had been combined for socially distanced sessions after one of the gyms had been taken over by a photographer, snapping images for the school, he reported.

A teacher who had only recently received his first Moderna vaccine was part of the roundup.

In the meantime, COVID also benched part of the boys junior varsity basketball team.

Nine junior varsity players, plus two from the UHS varsity team were benched after a player reported a positive diagnosis.

“It shouldn’t really impact the varsity schedule,” he said.

The pandemic, though, continues to be a player in the school district.

Thursday’s positive case of a Mountaineer Middle student likely may have been the district’s first incidence of the coronavirus being spread from within a school building, opposed to the community at large.

That particular student had originally been quarantined after coming in contact with a student who showed a positive diagnosis the day before.

Around 70% of the county’s 12,000 students are back in school for five-day, in-person learning.

That includes the more than 700 at UHS, which, before the pandemic, carried a student body of 1,300 in grades 9-12.