After a 2nd Conners Emerson school member tested positive, a letter went out to parents informing them that 7th graders would continue remote learning through December 8th, returning on December 9th and 8th graders would continue remote learning through December 14th, returning on December 15th.

In a subsequent letter, Principal Barb Neilly said

The 2 positive cases are related. It appears exposure took place off school grounds in another community setting. Please help us, by modeling mask wearing with your children, even when you are in your car just dropping them off.  It does make a difference, our staff is working really hard to keep our school open for in person learning.

Here's the original Monday night email

Dear CES Staff and Families,

Conners- Emerson School has confirmed a second individual today associated with CES who has tested positive for the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).  Designated staff initiated our response again today, which included communication with the Maine CDC and we are following the Maine CDC Standard Operating Procedure for investigation of COVID-19 in PK-12 Schools.

The second individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 will remain in isolation and quarantine as consistent with CDC guidelines.  All of these contacts are either CES students or staff.  Those students and staff will quarantine for 10 days as directed by the CDC and must have a PCR test for exposure before returning to school. Again, students and staff who are required to quarantine have been contacted directly by school personnel.

Indications for Testing using the BinaxNOW  (WALGREENS TEST)
BinaxNOW COVID-19 Antigen testing is approved for use on persons who are actively experiencing signs and/or symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Use of these devices on persons prior to symptom onset or when asymptomatic may result in inaccurate results (i.e., false negative – individual is positive for COVID-19, but the test says negative).  This is the reason why a PCR test is required for those students/staff deemed to be close contacts/ exposed individuals.

At this time we have the capacity to continue with  in-person learning. Grades 7 will be in remote learning mode for Tuesday and return on Wednesday, December 9th. Grade 8 students will be allowed to return on Tuesday,  December 15th.   Students in grades K-6 will remain in person learning.  We continue to follow all CDC and Department of Education protocols and are fully confident that school can continue safely.

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that ranges from mild to severe. It can be more severe in adults 60 years and older and in those with underlying conditions. The virus mainly spreads when an infected person coughs or sneezes and an uninfected person breathes in the virus. Signs and symptoms include:

PLEASE NOTE:  Both individuals had minimal symptoms, easily confused with allergy or mild cold symptoms.  It is imperative that you keep your child home if they are exhibiting any ONE of the symptoms listed below.

Most Common                    Less Common
Fever (100.4 F / 38 C or higher)            Muscle Pain
Chills                            Nausea or vomiting
Sore Throat                        Diarrhea
New loss of taste or smell                Fatigue
Cough, shortness of breath             Headache
or difficulty breathing                Congestion/Runny Nose

Please monitor yourself and your student daily for these signs and symptoms and stay home and contact your school nurse if symptoms start.

Maine CDC recommends measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These measures include wearing a multi-layer mask,  proper handwashing with soap and warm water, which is especially important after using the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. When soap and water is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.  Avoid close contact with people who are sick and maintain 6’ of physical distance with individuals in general.

In accordance with privacy guidelines, no additional information regarding the individual(s) who is positive can be shared.

Questions for the school can be directed to our school nurse, Melissa Veith Bishop Principal Barb Neilly or Assistant Principal Heather Webster at 288-3631.

For general COVID-19 questions, dial 211 (or 1-866-811-5695). You can also text your ZIP code to 898-211 or email Call a health care provider for questions about your symptoms. More information can be found at or

Thank you for your continued support and your diligence in following the safety protocols of mask wearing, social distancing and hand sanitizing, in addition to keeping your child(ren)  home when experiencing symptoms. These measures will allow the school to keep in person learning going.  We really appreciate you reaching out to the school with questions or concerns.

Kind regards and stay safe,


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