New cases reported at Valencia, some recovered students return to campus

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Following a series of positive COVID-19 diagnoses and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health canceling their Friday night football game, Valencia High School saw three new cases reported over the weekend, district administrators reported on Monday.  

However, despite the new positive tests, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health took no further action on the campus and some students previously diagnosed roughly two weeks ago have begun to return to school.  

“Three cases came in over the weekend linked to last week’s cases,” said Dave Caldwell, a spokesman for the William S. Hart Union High School District. “All three were determined from the school’s testing process.” 

Over the last two weeks, 39 total cases of COVID-19 have been positively identified among the Vikings’ staff and student body, a majority of which were reported last Tuesday and largely connected to the school’s cheerleading team.  

However, a disclosure of three new cases at the school on Thursday resulted in the Vikings forfeiting their final Foothill League football game of the year and the temporary closure of Dr. Paul Priesz Stadium on the Vikings’ campus in order for the facilities to be cleaned. 

The Vikings are slated to travel to Rio Mesa for the first round of the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section playoffs on Friday. Caldwell said that, as of the publication of this story, the playoff game was slated to be played despite last week’s forfeit. 

For the students and staff who received their first positive test results in the final weeks of October, some have been cleared to return campus due to how long it has been since their exposure, according to Caldwell.  

“Students may be released from quarantine after Day 7 from the date of last exposure if a test specimen is collected on Day 5 or later, the test is negative, and the student remains without symptoms,” read the campus guidelines published by the Department of Public Health. 

The time frame for quarantine and isolation varies for students who have not received a negative test following the initial positive one, presentation of symptoms and/or vaccination status, according to DPH guidelines. 

The Valencia High School campus remains open for in-person learning as of the publication of this article. 

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