LOWER MERION TOWNSHIP, Penn. (KYW) - An investigation is underway to see if a faulty ventilation system is to blame for a COVID-19 outbreak at an elementary school in Pennsylvania.
Eight students tested positive for coronavirus at the school.
“We hadn’t seen an outbreak like this in a single classroom,” Lower Merion school district spokesperson Amy Buckman said.
Buckman said the second grade class was quarantined while the rest of the school remained opened as officials tried to figure out what happened.
Officials learned that the control mechanism called a damper was only allowing about 30% of fresh air into the second grade classroom.
“The temperature in the classroom was fine. There was air coming out of that vent as it should have been. It just wasn’t as much air,” Buckman said.
School officials add that two vaccinated family members of the impacted students tested positive as well.
“From what we understand from the Montgomery County Office of Public Health, they think that we could be looking at a variant here, which might also explain why there was such contagiousness in the classroom,” Buckman said.
The school district said a deep cleaning was done inside the classroom and it will continue to monitor the building’s air quality.