Classes canceled at St. Thomas Academy, Visitation School after parent tests positive for COVID-19

Classes are canceled Thursday and Friday at Visitation School and Saint Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights, Minnesota after a parent of one of the students at Saint Thomas Academy tested positive for COVID-19

Although the parent with the coronavirus is connected to Saint Thomas Academy, since the two schools share students are resources, the decision was made to close both out of an abundance of caution. 

School officials sent an email to parents late Wednesday night informing them that all classes and campus activities at both schools were cancelled. Classes will not resume until after Spring Break, which starts next week. 

Both schools are working with local health agencies, including the Minnesota Department of Health, to determine the appropriate course of action.

Minnesota now has five confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state. There are two cases in Ramsey County and one each in Anoka, Carver and Olmsted counties. 

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of COVID-19 a pandemic. There are now more than 121,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide. 

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spread primarily by respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza is spread. It can also spread when people touch surfaces that have been contaminated by an infected person and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth.

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately. For more information from the CDC, click here.

More information about coronavirus can be found on MDH’s Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) website. MDH has set up a COVID-19 public hotline that is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The hotline number is 651-201-3920.