New Canaan’s highest elected official said Tuesday that the town now is seeing a “handful of young positive cases.”
Those cases include “one under 10 years old,” according to First Selectman Kevin Moynihan.
“Our bubble has burst,” he said during a regular meeting of the Board of Selectmen, held via videoconference.
“The superintendent has notified parents that we have a handful of young positive COVID cases, one under 10 years old,” Moynihan said. “And I think we have a couple of out-of-town—at least one, maybe two out-of-town college kids. And I suppose it was inevitable, as the superintendent said, because other school districts are beginning to have some positive cases with school-age children. We are still doing contact tracing. We want to try and make sure we understand as much as we can these new cases.”
The comments come on the heels of emails sent to the New Canaan Public Schools community Sunday and Monday by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi saying that two separate cases of COVID-19 had been identified among members of New Canaan High School. It wasn’t immediately clear whether the “handful” of new cases that Moynihan referred to included any New Canaan Public Schools beyond those that prompted the superintendent’s emails.
Luizzi addressed the new cases during Monday night’s regular meeting of the Board of Education.
“We are in an environment now across the state, across the country, where positive cases are going to appear, so that planning that we spent the summer doing really is paying off now as we work through these protocols and do the right things, always prioritizing health and safety, but really striving to make sure that folks are notified, that we identify those impacted,” Luizzi said. “We isolate them through quarantine and we contain the spread of the virus, because it really is all about containing that spread.”
He added that “it’s a challenging environment for people and it’s challenging if someone is diagnosed positive and they give us that information and we have to act upon that.”
“And while we certainly recognize that nobody that people don’t want to be responsible for others going into quarantine, we also want to make sure that they recognize and understand that we are doing all of this to contain the spread and maintain the health and safety of our school, of our community, of everybody,” he said. “This is a highly contagious disease, and it’s nobody’s failure if they are testing positive. It’s a highly contagious disease and they’re in an area where they picked it up. So know that there’s no value judgment to this whatsoever. By notifying us, we can take the appropriate steps. And of course, we will protect the confidentiality of those involved.”
Moynihan at a selectmen meeting just two weeks ago had said “New Canaan is living in a bubble” with respect to its low rate of infection.
At Tuesday’s meeting, Selectman Kathleen Corbet asked whether new Canaan had plans for town-wide or school-wide COVID-19 testing.
Moynihan said, “Not right now, although the superintendent has an agreement with Stamford Hospital to ramp up testing if he wants to.”
He added, “Although the CDC did change their policy to recommend the testing of non-symptomatic people, I just don’t see a purpose right now in doing more generalized testing.”
Moynihan said he might do a town-wide outcall on the new COVID-19 virus cases Tuesday night.