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Health officials suspect LakeVille High School COVID-19 outbreak tied to out-of-state wrestling events

20 of the 23 high school students testing positive associated with wrestling program
Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 10:11 PM EST
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OTISVILLE, Mich. (WJRT) - LakeVille High School has been shut down since February 10 when 12 students and about five staff members tested positive for COVID-19.

Nine days later, that number is up to 23 students and seven staff members.

Health officials suspect the first cases were associated with two out-of-state wrestling events: one in Wisconsin at the end of January and the other in Ohio the beginning of February.

”As far as a team to be able to say it went as a school team, no. They went as individuals with their families.” Mike Lytle said. Lytle is the the Superintendent of LakeVille Community Schools.

Lytle says 20 of the 23 students testing positive were in one way or another associated with the wrestling program.

At first, the high school scheduled its face-to-face reopening for February 22, but as the cases increased, health officials were concerned it could be a more contagious variant spread.

Working closely with the county health department, Lytle sent a letter to families, extending the return date to March 1.

”Yes, it’s a difficult situation that we’re dealing with, but it was a relatively easy decision to do the right thing based on the health and safety of our kids and staff,” Lytle said.

In response to the outbreak, he coordinated with the Genesee County Health Department, offering a free drive-thru antigen testing clinic on Friday for asymptomatic students in quarantine.

“Since we already had the students in quarantine, if we can test them now, we reduce that contact tracing. We reduce that ripple effect,” Lytle said.

Lytle says this will help ensure a safe return back to school by March 1.

Another free drive-thru testing clinic is in the works for late next week.

To check the school’s COVID-19 dashboard, click here.

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