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Food service workers with Atascadero Unified test positive for COVID-19, sources say

Atacadero Unified says food distribution is safe after reports of positive COVID-1 cases among employees
Posted at 10:32 PM, Apr 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-03 02:09:18-04

At least two food service workers with the Atascadero Unified School District have tested positive for COVID-19, sources confirm to KSBY News.

Atascadero Unified Superintendent Tom Butler told KSBY he cannot confirm or deny the claims, citing privacy laws, but did say there are no positive cases among students or teachers in the district.

Sources tell KSBY the workers who tested positive work at Atascadero Middle School.

One was reportedly working at the school until she began showing symptoms and at that time, was told to not come to work.

The district announced Tuesday that lunch would only be served for the remainder of the week at Santa Rosa Elementary. Butler has not said whether the change was due to possible COVID-19 issues.

He did, however, say a complete sanitation of every facility is done each day. “Our food service prep areas are absolutely clean to the highest standards… we have a really safe environment there,” he told KSBY.

While the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department would also not confirm whether any of the county’s more than 80 positive COVID-19 cases were among food service workers in the Atascadero Unified School District, health officials did say they are working to identify positive cases in the county.

The health department adds that “food service workers are monitored closely throughout the year, and are trained on and follow appropriate food safety precautions to reduce the possibility of transmitting COVID-19 or any other foodborne illness. The food safety trainings are mandated by law, and safe food handling practices verified by our Environmental Health Department through regular inspections.”

Butler says any employees who begin exhibiting symptoms or signs of illness are told to contact a physician.

As of Thursday, there were 17 positive COVID-19 cases reported in Atascadero.