Update: Feb. 10 2:48 p.m.
The individual who tested positive in Hays County for the B.1.1.7 U.K. variant of COVID-19 has been identified as a student at Dahlstrom Middle School in Buda, according to a district statement from Hays Consolidated Independent School District.
Students were dismissed early from campus on Feb. 10 and will not return to campus until Feb. 25. Dahlstrom Middle School will operate via 100% virtual instruction as ordered by Hays CISD Superintendent Dr. Eric Wright.
"This will allow us time to conduct our contact tracing, to thoroughly sanitize and disinfect the campus, and to allow the virus incubation period to pass," Wright says in a statement.
The Hays County Local Health Department (HCLHD) has been notified from the Department of State Health Services that an individual in Hays County has tested positive for the B.1.1.7 U.K. variant of COVID-19.
“The person who tested positive with this new strain of the virus was asymptomatic,” says Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra in a statement. “Now is a good time to remind everyone to be extra vigilant and continue to do all the recommended safety protocols.”
The U.K. variant of COVID-19 is deemed more contagious and may be linked with an increased risk of death in comparison to other strains of the virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
HCLHD Director Tammy Crumley says there is a contract tracing program in progress for the new variant case.
The University Star will continue to provide updates as more information becomes available.