Coronavirus: Murrieta Valley High School closed, dozens of students placed under self-quarantine

MURRIETA, Calif. (KABC) -- Murrieta Valley High School is scheduled to be closed Monday and for the immediate future until an employee's novel coronavirus test results comes back.

School officials announced Friday they would close the school as a precaution after it was learned the employee was ill and being tested. The employee made a recent trip to a country with a known coronavirus outbreak and is not being identified due to privacy laws.

Public health officials issued exclusion orders to 71 students, telling them to self-quarantine. Those students may have come into contact with the sick individual. The actions were taken to prevent students and employees from possibly becoming sick, school officials said.

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Riverside County's health chief has declared a local health emergency following the disclosure of two novel coronavirus cases in the county. The declaration was a response in particular to the county's first "locally acquired" case of the virus - one not tied to the individual's travel abroad. The unidentified patient is undergoing testing at Eisenhower Health in Rancho Mirage.

The other known case in a county resident was diagnosed in a person who was a passenger on the Diamond Princess cruise ship who was diagnosed last week and is recovering at a medical facility in Northern California.

Meanwhile, Gov. Gavin Newsom says it's a matter of "when - not if" there will be more public school closures.
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