Local elementary school closing for 3 weeks after staff members test positive

INDIAN TRAIL, N.C. — The return to learning at one Union County school has been short-lived.

Poplin Elementary in Indian Trail is shutting down for weeks because of COVID-19. The entire school is moving to remote learning for the next three weeks after two staff members tested positive.

[READ MORE: Union County teachers protest reopening plans ahead of first day of school]

The move to remote learning happened days after the school released its back to school video highlighting the steps that they were taking to prevent the spread of the virus.

School officials said Wednesday that two staff members tested positive for COVID-19. They’re working with the Union County Health Department to determine their next steps.

If a student came into contact with those who tested positive, their parents will receive a letter from the health department.

Channel 9 learned Thursday there was a positive case at Weddington High School.

“Everyone is just bracing for when the next shoe is going to drop,” said Brittany Gendron, a literacy coach at Monroe Middle School. “And when is it going to be my campus, and when is it going to be my classroom?”

Teachers said they are stressed about the lack of communication from the school district.

They said they are not being told about cases at other campuses and don’t know how UCPS will handle future cases.

Several parents with students at Poplin Elementary told us they certainly understand why the school made the call and they are working to adjust.

Christen Ripoli told us her son Caleb would rather be in school and when they found out Poplin wasn’t going to be having kids in the classroom for the next few weeks, they were both disappointed.

“Yeah we got a phone call that there would be no school...it would’ve been his first day ... a little sad,” she said.

Parent Rachel Cummins said it was probably inevitable that the virus would find its way into a school somewhere.

‘It’s just sad that we’re the first ones and I just hope they took the precautions that our kids didn’t get close to anyone that has it,” she said.

After making a lot of new friends on her first day back, 5th grader Savannah said she wanted to be back in school, but she gets it.

“Really you don’t want to get hurt, you just want to be healthy and safe,” she said.

Poplin’s plan is to clean the building and get it ready so students and teachers can come back on Sept. to try again.

Another Union County school reported a positive COVID-19 case. A student attending Weddington High School tested positive for the virus on Thursday. The district said it is working with the local health department to trace who the student had been in close contact with.