COVID-19

FITZWILLIAM — Someone associated with Emerson Elementary School has tested positive for COVID-19, the Monadnock Regional School District announced Friday. This comes on the heels of reports last week of three other cases at the Fitzwilliam school.

The person who tested positive in this latest case hasn’t been in the school building since Nov. 23, and no students or staff have been identified as close contacts in that setting, Superintendent Lisa A. Witte wrote in a letter Friday to the community.

Emerson will stay open, according to Witte.

This new case marks the seventh confirmed to date in the Monadnock district — which covers Fitzwilliam, Gilsum, Richmond, Roxbury, Swanzey and Troy — and the fifth within the past two weeks.

Someone at Gilsum STEAM Academy tested positive in mid-October, and Troy Elementary School had a coronavirus case in early October. On Thursday, a case was announced at Cutler Elementary School in Swanzey.

The district hasn’t specified whether the cases have involved staff or students.

Most other districts in the region have switched to fully remote learning through the holidays, among rising local cases. Last month, the Monadnock school board opted against making a similar shift, with members citing the low case incidence within the schools and the value of kids being able to have some instruction in person.

Students in the Monadnock district attend school in person two days per week and do remote learning the rest of the week. Families also have the option for their children to learn fully remotely.

Witte, in her letter, said the district is closely monitoring the level of community and school impact from COVID-19, as outlined in the state health department’s school guidance.

“Health and safety remains our top priority,” she said. “We will take each day, one day at a time, carefully monitor all the appropriate data and dashboards, and act accordingly.”

Olivia Belanger can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1439, or obelanger@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @OBelangerKS.