Riverhead Middle School staff member tests positive for COVID-19, district says

A staff member at the Riverhead Middle School has tested positive for COVID-19, superintendent Aurelia Henriquez said Sunday. The staff member did not become symptomatic until several days after school closed, she added.

The district was notified Sunday morning, she said.

“Due to laws related to the privacy of students and staff, I am unable to provide any further details,” she said. “The district has been in contact with the Suffolk County Department of Health.

At least 11 cases have been confirmed so far in Riverhead Town, according to the latest figured released by the Suffolk County Executive’s office.

Staff members at nearby districts in Mattituck and Southold both had tested positive for the coronavirus as well. All schools in Suffolk County were closed last week and will continue to be closed this upcoming week. Further closures beyond that are likely as the number of confirmed cases in the county and state continue to trend upward.

“When the Suffolk County Department of Health Services receives a positive case of COVID-19 an investigation is opened, and close contact tracing is initiated,” Ms. Henriquez said in a letter to the community. “Those who are identified as a close contact are notified directly by the Department of Health, which will also issue quarantine orders and other directives as necessary.

“The Department of Health advises that any individuals who need medical care should call their medical providers to report their illnesses prior to seeking care at a clinic, physician’s office, or hospital. In addition, anyone exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms is asked to call the New York State Coronavirus Hotline at 1-888-364-3065.”